The book Networks of De-institutional Architecture: Tokyo

02.03.21-08.03.21


Spaces sheltered in between railways, expressways, bridges, and high-rises host the everyday activities of Tokyoites. The book Networks of De-institutional Architecture: Tokyo tells stories about urban fishing, farming, camping, cooking, children’s games, clubs, and communities in the biggest metropolis in the world. It draws an image of a less known face of Tokyo while indulging in architectural design, behaviorology, and management of independent cases and networks of de-institutional spaces.

The idea of independence or de-institutionalization of common activities and common spaces has been developed by philosophers and intellectuals like Ivan Illich, Henry Lefebvre, and Elinor Ostrom. Today, the independent spaces in the city are a practical expression of the early theoretical ideas from the beginning of the XX century. These spaces are spontaneous, as well as mindfully sought. They often emerge in response to crises, when citizen and professional collectives engage with political, economic, and social agendas implemented in their regular activities. Projects like community kitchens, shared libraries, alternative cinemas, experimental schools, independent cultural centers, interest clubs, craft workshops, common spaces illustrated architectural typologies which provided alternative platforms for direct sharing between people. This way, de-institutional architecture has proved as a sustainable model which allows people to practice shared activities together. ...


Networks of De-institutional Architecture: Tokyo is a research project by architect Ivan Bonev, developed in Yoshiharu Tsukamoto Laboratory of Tokyo Institute of Technology between 2017 and 2019. The research project is further developed with the illustrator Victoria Paeva, architect Anton Kerezov, and architect Veronica Boneva during the summer of 2020.

The book Networks of De-institutional Architecture: Tokyo is a catalog of the exhibition of the same name from the autumn of 2020, part of the 31st Days of Japanese Culture in Bulgaria, co-organized between Transformatori Association and The Embassy of Japan in Bulgaria.

Transformatori Association will use 20% of the book sales to support independent common projects.

Organizers: Transformatori Association, Embassy of Japan in Bulgaria

Supported by: Japan Foundation

In partnership with: Yoshiharu Tsukamoto Laboratory – Tokyo Institute of Technology, Faculty of Architecture – University of Architecture, Civil Engineering and Geodesy, Sofia Municipality – Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Union of Architects in Bulgaria, Media Surf Communications, Gifted Urban Culture Hub, KO-OP Co-working and Art Space


Author: Arch. Ivan Bonev

Illustrations: Arch. Ivan Bonev, Victoria Paeva, Arch. Veronica Boneva, Veronika Tabakova, Silvia Cherneva Photos: Arch. Ivan Bonev, Arch. Anton Kerezov

Graphic Design: Poststudio


Yoshiharu Tsukamoto Laboratory: Prof. Yoshiharu Tsukamoto, Assoc. Prof. Fuminori Nousaku, Assoc. Prof. Kei Sasaki, Dr. Arch. Sara Hayashi, Arch. Selma Shimura, Arch. Hans Henrik Fricke, Arch. Ivan Bonev