Centre for Architecture Theory Criticism History
School of Architecture

The Doma in Japanese Residential Design

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

ATCH Lunch, Wednesday May 27, 1.15-2.00 pm. Frank White, room 413.

Marika Neustupny

My research looks at the daily use and methods of provision for water in the design of urban dwellings. This is difficult to determine through publications alone. As a recipient of the Guilford Bell Scholarship in 2014, I spent two months in Tokyo as a visiting scholar at the Tokyo Institute of Technology (T.I. Tech), and had the opportunity to visit a number projects to investigate the relationship between water and design thinking, and to interview the architects on their intentions, including Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of SANAA. I regularly presented my findings/ thoughts with members of the Tsukamoto Laboratory at T.I.Tech. In this paper I will argue that the traditional architectural role of the Doma (earthern floor) is intimately linked to a philosophy surrounding wet areas in Japanese residential architecture, a practice that continues to the present day. The doma divides areas within a house, contains circulation and brings the informality of outside within the enclosure of the dwelling.

All welcome.