"Beautiful Laguna in Venice Seen Through
Hiroshi Kawanagi, Photographer
I was born in 1947 along Onagigawa Bridge and grown up seeing the canal.
I visited Venice in 1973 and started to take pictures of Laguna because
I was interested in livings on Laguna which have much in common with
old Fukagawa and Onagigawa areas.
I compared pictures of Venice and Onagigawa focused on working ships
when discharging cargos, etc. They showed livings along waterfront,
and I was really impressed by common landscapes.
In 2003, I took a boat trip from Japan to Venice for 40 days, from
the thoughts that water flowing within Venice might lead to Japan.
I made a voyage across Asia, Arabian Sea, Suez Canal, Mediterranean
Sea, the Adriatic Sea, and to Venice. There were many things which
could only be seen from a ship. In Mare, a little boat came and went
between fishing boats. In Suez Port, Elbara bypass was used for ships
passing by. The ships seemed to proceed on the desert. Finally, from
the Adriatic Sea, I arrived to Venice through Laguna.
When I took pictures of Venice, I focused on the common points of
Fugakawa and Venice such as living on water, e.g., discharging cargos
by hand instead of machines. Furthermore, water, sky and light of Venice
always inspire photographers including me.
Venice reminds me of my hometown. In Grado, the signs indicating the
direction for Venice and Trieste can be found, while in Laguna Veneta,
original landscape of Laguna can be seen.
In Pellestrina Island, I met an old woman who made lace stitches for
her granddaughter, and saw a shipyard constructing wooden ships. The
hutches made by hand on the sea which had been used as a warehouse
of fishing gears, were used as ateliers and date spots. In Chioggia,
I could see a fish market, and an old woman who made fishing gears.
Between Chioggia and Sotto Marina, a place for prayer on Laguna could
be found. In some areas, Salicornia grew proliferously as in Hokkaido.
As described above, in Laguna, we can see various landscapes closely
linked to the livings with water.
Now I will show photos of Venice.
When aqua alta occurs, Venice presents different landscapes. White
curbs are laid on the road along canals near Rialto Bridge. The curbs
indicate the border between the canal and roads, preventing pedestrians
from falling into the canal. Children were swimming and practicing
to pull oars. Venice could not function when the water level becomes
too low. The pictures of Rialto Bridge which I took show that the bridge
transforms itself along with the time, and it serves roles as a meeting
To see landscape through a finder is to highlight what we want to
see or to show, by trimming surrounding landscape away.
"Kaishu of Historical Architecture in
Italy and Japan―Case Studies and Operational Methodology"
Hidemichi Takasaka, Nihon Sekkei Inc.
After graduated Tokyo University at Faculty of Architecture, I studied
at Roma University in the doctor course of Department of Architecture.
I got a PhD studying "ricupero" and now work for Nihon Sekkei
As "Chapter 1: Kaishu of Historical Architecture in Roma",
I will explain the definitions of words relating to architectural intervention,
and show research results of kaishu in Roma. In Japan, words relating
to architectural intervention have been used based on insufficient
interpretations and definitions. Prof. Piero Ostilio Rossi said that
in Italy, words relating to intervention have been variously defined
by nuances and used as Eskimos distinguish snow based on size, weight,
temperature, humidity, etc. For example, "restauro" (restoration)
and "ricupero" (recuperation) are both commonly translated
into "restoration"(改修, kaishu), though they have different
nuances. In restauro, functions can be newly added, though shape of
the building can not be changed in principle. In ricupero, shape of
the building can be changed. Therefore it allows wider ranges of intervention
than restauro. The words relating to intervention can be listed as
follows: intervento (intervention), transformazione (transformation),
ristrutturazione (reconstruction), riorganizazzione (reorganization),
risanamento (redevelopment), ripristino (reproduction), rinnovamento
(renewal), conversione (conversion), restyling (restyling), conservazione
(conservation), riconstruzione (reconstruction), etc. I redefined these
words, and compared with Japanese words. I will introduce eleven cases
of intervention in Roma. In Crinale stable facility, spiral staircase
was added in my intervention plan (Fig.1). This was the good example
of ricupero because a different shape than the original one was added
to the inner space. Ruins of Mercati Traianei (Fig.2) is one of the
representative cases of restauro because original shapes of stairs
within Grande Aula and those between Grande Aula to Foro di Traiano
are retained, respecting historical values. In the tower of Alitalia
(Fig.3), restyling was applied to transform existing images of the
architecture into another one. This method seems to be most commonly
seen in Japan.
As Chapter 2, I will introduce some cases of Kaishu for historical
buildings in Japan; for example, Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse, Meiji
Seimei Kan of Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company Building, Dojunkai
Aoyama Apartment Building, and Grand Shrine of Ise. Professors of Roma
University wondered why Dojunkai Apartment was demolished and impressed
that the reconstruction at defined interval of Grand Shrine of Ise
was started in ancient times.
In the next place, as Chapter 3: Comparative Study of Kaishu as Intervention
for Historical Architecture in Roma and Japan, I compared various phases
relating to kaishu between Italy and Japan, such as architectural,
cultural, economic, legal, political, organizational, historical, geographical
and ideological viewpoints. Then I compared kaishu of Italy and Japan
from functional viewpoint, through industrial architecture, office
buildings, residences, religious architecture, and art museum or exposition
spaces. Since 1960, regulations on urban planning and conservation
of historical architecture have been strictly established in Italy.
A kaishu plan is discussed in detail and often for long periods, and
is not always completed. In academic education, kaishu is fit into
the course as one of the important fields. The administrative department
relating to kaishu include Ministero per i Beni e le attivita` Culturali
(minister of cultural property) which is in charge of kaishu and conservation
of architecture, and Soprintendenza (Inspection Bureau). They carry
major roles in construction works. An old material bank is sometimes
prepared for kaishu works. Such stock system helps to restore buildings
as near as possible to original conditions.
In Chapter 4, as conclusion, I focused on the needs to regain physical
intensity, and to response aesthetic, historical and usability requirements,
for kaishu of architecture as an art work. As for materials configuring
architecture, it is required to perfectly understand the concept of
each material. The materials as an expression of architectural image,
are divided into structure and appearance. It is difficult to restore
every materials making up architecture to original state, though it
is required to retain an original as the real thing in somewhere of
the structure. In regard to composition of internal space, for regeneration
of attractive spaces based on kaishu, the methods for layout and link
between existing and new architecture are important, rather than the
resulting atmosphere, which is often affected by subjectivity such
as "harmony", "tension", etc. As for conversion
of functions and value judgment, it is important to decide what to
be kept based on evaluation of compatibility between original functions
and newly specified usage. Furthermore, intervention should retain
reversibility and should be re-acknowledged.
Though it is not appropriate to apply the methodology of kaishu in
Italy to Japan, essential elements for kaishu can be shared universally.
It will be necessary to explore various possibilities of kaishu in
Japan from economical and legal points of view. Based on the difference
between Japan and Italy lying in the historical position and education,
we should communicate the attractiveness of revitalized spaces through
kaishu, and how they could become attractive. We might feel the attractiveness
of historical buildings, on the cross points of four elements: history,
beauty, modernity and time. We used to consider the newest thing to
be modern, though it is only the first page of the layers of history;
by turning these pages, depth or affluence can also be found in modernity.
Crinale Stable Facility, Newly Introduced Spiral Staircase]
Ruins of Mercati Traianei]