Topic for Debate
Were projects of Archigram and the Japanese Metabolist movements applicable?
Were the projects and theories put forward by Archigram and the Japanese Metabolists in the 60's realistic and applicable or were they just wild ideas of a bunch of imaginative, young architects?

Last week I had the opportunity to meet two founders of the Japanese Metabolist movement: Kiyonori Kikutake and Fumihiko Maki. Whereas Maki had distanced himself from the movement a few years after it started, Kikutake still believes that their ideas were very much realistic and applicable. Any comments?
Hammad Husain
Were projects of Archigram and the Japanese Metabolist movements applicable?
i think thier theories still make sense. it wasnt limited to architecture, but there theories were also used in other fields.

architecture is a manifesto of time and situations. they appeared in response to the need of the society, which was changing very fast - a response to the failure of modernism to fulful the need of people. i think they were trying to respond to the world's phenomenon like over population, poverty, etc... using technology as a means of solving the problem - mega structure that grow and are responsive to the need of the time - cities that move and change the landscape...
Allahyar Raza
Were projects of Archigram and the Japanese Metabolist movements applicable?
I agree with your views Allahyar. Peter Cook and co are still holding exhibitions all over the world, showing their work and their theories. Similarly, Kikutake is still designing buildings in his Metabolist philosophy. His Marine city project was actually realised but on a much smaler scale. It is a huge floating 'city' but its not being used as residential units but probably office space (I think). One project that was acctually built as early as the early seventies, was the Nagakin Capsule building in Tokyo by Kisho Kurokawa - who was a part of the movement. that building is still being used as bachelor residences - its original function.

So I believe that Herron's walking city may sound a bit far-fetched and space-age, but the ideas floated by the Japanese were quite realistic.
Hammad Husain


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