Contemporary Architecture Course

This course showcases works of contemporary architecture in Japan after 1950.

1. Kyoto International Conference Center
This building, designed by Sachio Otani, opened in 1966 as Japan's first state-sponsored international conference center. Since then, it has been used as a place for intellectual exchange and has become world famous. Many international conferences, including the World Water Forum, have been held here. The Kyoto Protocol, designed to prevent global warming, was also adopted here.

* Address: 422 Iwakura oosagi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Tel.: 075-705-1234
* Access: 5-minute walk from Kokusaikaikan Station on the Karasuma Subway Line

2. Kitayama Ining '23
Built in 1987 by Shin Takamatsu, currently professor in the research division at Kyoto University's graduate school of engineering, this structure boasts a fresh design and is currently used as a shopping center.

* Address: 5-9 Shimogamo Maehagi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 3-minute walk from Kitayama Station on the Karasuma Subway Line

3. Garden of Fine Arts
Designed by Tadao Ando and completed in 1994, this outdoor museum presents near-life sized reproductions of famous masterpieces on porcelain panels. There are 8 works in all and include Michelangelo's "The Last Judgment" and high priest Toba's "The Scroll of Frolicking Animals and Humans." This is the world's first open-air art garden. Following a gentle slope down to the second-floor basement, you can enjoy the corridor's unique construction and the sound of rushing water from a large and small waterfall and pond. With the greenery of the nearby botanical garden in view, you'll feel as if you have been dropped in the center of a deep forest.

* Address: Shimogamo Hangi-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Tel.: 075-724-2188
* Access: 1-minute walk from Kitayama Station on the Karasuma Subway Line
* Hours: 9:00 - 17:00
* Closed: December 28-January 4
* Entrance fees: Adults: 100 yen, Children: (5-15) 50 yen
* Website:

4. Kyoto Tower
This Kyoto icon was built by Mamoru Yamada in 1964. The tower rests on the rooftop of a building and is supposed to evoke a light house, referring to the fact that Kyoto is not a seaside town. Unlike the Eiffel Tower and the Tokyo Tower, it does not house a steel frame. The tower reaches 131 meters and you can take an elevator up to the observation deck at a height of 100 meters.

* Address: 721-1 Higashi Siokouji-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: 1-minute walk from Kyoto Station
* Hours: 9:00 - 21:20 (last entry at 21:00)
* Closed: Open year round
* Entrance fees: Adults: 800 yen, High School Students 650yen, Elementary/Junior High School Students 550yen, Children(over 3) 150yen
* Website:

5. Kyoto Station Building
This structure, completely renovated in 1997, sports a gigantic staircase, and with its wide open spaces and soaring height, reflects Kyoto's storied history and geographical location as basin city surrounded by mountains. The nucleus of this center includes the major hub for JR trains and subways, a theater, hotel, department store, and museum. Designed by Hiroshi Hara, the building features a central concourse, raised 45 meters above ground, from which stretches a glass promenade (Sky Road). This provides a sweeping view of the city and is not to be missed.

* Address: Higashi Siokouji-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto City
* Access: Kyoto Station
* Closed: Open year round
* Website:
* English Guide Map:


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