Remembering Jan Kaplický – Architect of the Future @ Design Museum

Remembering Jan Kaplický @ Design Museum

今年1月15日に71歳で亡くなった建築家、Jan Kaplickýヤン・カプリツキー)の追悼展「Remembering Jan Kaplický – Architect of the Future」(デザイン・ミュージアム)が、昨日のエントリーの「Mariscal: Drawing Life」とともに、今週末11月1日で終わる。プラハ生まれのカプリツキー氏は、、1968年のプラハの春(旧ソ連のチェコスロヴァキアへの軍事介入)後、祖国を脱出し、イギリスに亡命。パリのポンピドゥー・センターCentre Georges Pompidou)を共に手がけた、レンゾ・ピアノRenzo Piano)とリチャード・ロジャース卿(Richard Rogers)の建築事務所、ノーマン・フォスター卿のFoster and Partnersを経て、建築シンクタンクFuture Systems(フューチャー・システムズ)を主宰。生物的なフォルムと未来派ハイテクを組み合わせた、常識を覆すユニークな建築物で世界的に有名になった。代表作には、数々の賞を受賞し、バーミンガムのシンボルにもなったSelfridgesセルフリッジズ)や、宇宙船を彷彿させるロンドンのLord’s Cricket Ground(ローズ・クリケット場)のメディアセンター等がある。亡くなる前は、チェコ共和国での仕事に力を入れていた。彼の母国での最初の重要な建築物となるはずだった、国立図書館の新しい建物の国際コンペに通ったが、「Octopus(たこ)」とあだ名された、紫と緑のしみにも見える奇抜なデザインに反対意見が相次ぎ、残念ながらプロジェクトはキャンセルされた。カプリツキーは、彼がデザインした、České Budějovice(チェスケー・ブディヨヴィツェ)に建築予定だった議会とコンサートホールの完成を見届けることなく、故郷のプラハで、娘の誕生を見届けた直後、急性心不全で亡くなった。

追悼展では代表作の他にも、世に出なかった作品、彼の太陽発電の乗り物、電気自動車、ジュエリー、2階建てバス、果てはビキニデザインまで、カプリツキーの想像力と才能を余すことなく展示。SF映画に出てきそうな、彼のユニークで未来的なデザインは、模型を見ているだけでも楽しい。下の階で開催中の、建築家の「David Chipperfield: Form Matters」に比べると規模が小さいのが残念だ。

Remembering Jan Kaplický – Architect of the Future” at Design Museum will end at the end of this week on November 1, as well as yesterday’s entry “Mariscal: Drawing Life.”

World-renowned Czech-born architect Jan Kaplický, who died on January 15 this year, escaped to London in September 1968 in the wake of the Prague Spring, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia. He worked at the office of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, with whom he developed the design for the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, and then joined Foster Associates, now Foster and Partners. In 1979 Kaplický set up his own architectural think tank Future Systems with David Nixon, and had created innovative and unusual architectures style that combined organic forms with high tech futurism. His major works include awards-winning Selfridges Building which became an icon of Birmingham, and spaceship look-like media center at Lord’s Cricket Ground. Kaplický began to spend more time in the Czech Republic toward the end of his life. He won the international architectural competition for the new Czech National Library building, which was to have been his first major building in his home country, but his design plan resembling a green and purple blob and nicknamed “the Octopus,” was cancelled due to the strong objections as it would “ruin Prague’s panorama.” Kaplický died with heart failure in his native Prague, just after observing his daughter’s birth, without seeing the completion of another of his project, the Congress and Concert Hall Centre in České Budějovice (Budweis), with his own eyes.

In this exhibition, you can see gifted architect and designer Kaplický’s major works as well as his stream of ideas for solar powered vehicles, electric cars, jewellery, bikinis and double-decker buses. His futuristic design, perfect for Science Fiction movies, is fun and exciting. It is a shame that the space is much smaller than another architect’s less entertaining exhibition “David Chipperfield: Form Matters” downstairs.

Remembering Jan Kaplický @ Design Museum

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