I am dedicating this post to my friend Anke who is an architect like me and I am sure would love the architecture and displays of this museum.
Takenaka Komuten Co. is one of the most famous “super-general contractors” in Japan, having built the Tokyo Tower, the Tokyo Dome Stadium as well as other major airports, public buildings, skyscrapers.
Being founded in 1603 it is definitely the oldest of the “big 5” general contractors (with Obayashi, Kajima, Shimizu, and Taisei)
After the WW2, when Japan was exposed to power tools, reinforced concrete and steel frame construction, Takenaka felt the need to preserve the heritage and the memory of the glorious japanese timber frame construction techniques and culture and founded this “Tools Museum”
It was transferred 7 years ago to an idyllic location just a few minutes away from the shinkansen “Shin Kobe” station making it easy to visit even if you have to make a detour. I am telling you: it is definitely worth a visit and after having a clear understanding about japanese construction culture and details you will appreciate much more your visits to the temples in Nara or Kyoto.
The beautiful high-tech and warmly handmade building by Takenaka Komuten is a must-see in itself, featuring maniac woodworking details, huge glass openings framing the luxurious green and the plasterwork of the master Akira Kusumi.
Big news within the news: I will be offering a guided tour of the museum in english for visitors coming to Kobe on a cruise. The organizer is JTB the tour operator and at present we are looking at a schedule of about once a month starting in january 2020.
For this purpose I was showed around by the museum director himself: wonderful man formerly member of the design section of Takenaka Komuten. I took some 224 pictures and I would like to share them with you hoping they can provide a good enough excuse to bring you to Kobe.
I am not going to share all of the 220+shots, but they will still be too many for a normal blog post. I will try to use a photo gallery plugin hoping it works. Please let me know of any usability or compatibility problem.
information about the location and opening hours, please visit the museum homepage: https://www.dougukan.jp/information?lang=en