Strips Hospital in Shiga, Japan | EASTERN design office


Stripes Comprehensive Medical Care Building desiged by EASTERN design office

The form of this construction is the dancing light and the shadow.
They dance slowly over a day.
They dance slowly like a Noh performance.
This has a sculpturesque solidity in its expression.


Random curves sculptured into the façade serve as a random structure. 41.13m on the long side, 13.13m on the short side, and 7m in height, providing 12 entrances for people and 30 openings for light.
The site for this project is on the east side of Lake Biwa、the biggest lake in Japan and this is the first medical building for rent in this area.


Waterways run through the town. This paddy field area was once a cross road of lively culture. Kyoto lies to its west, Kumano and Ise are to its south. Sacred Mt. Ibuki is in its north. Those who went to the east passed along this land from the ancient Yayoi time.


An extraordinary and dramatic effect obtained from appreciating noh performances is similar to richness obtained through simplicity. It can be a merit to give the place a tension through simplicity. This notion leads to the conceptual idea of this building: a corridor of lights and shadows dancing slowly over a day. It is our intention to build a certain special and rich form on this land that has blessing inherited from ancient times.


Farmers pass through a small paddy field footpath. Children dance around the hedge. Taking a nap under the shade of trees. Seasonal religious services by rich farmers. Performing shishimai (Lion dance). Greetings of people serving rice cakes and their smile and smiling faces. Performing of kagura (Shinto music and dance) by traveling entertainers. Dances performed by such people are the origin of this form. Forgetting daily labor and suffering, makes people to leave their worries behind and take a break, laugh and calm down. This opens up the ray of light which surpasses the day-to-day world.

The shafts of light woven by the stripes of the wall have an effect to change the nature of an ordinary crossing path. Form has an effect to vibrate lights. Inside “The Strip” that dances slowly all through a day, children whirl around.
Next to the site is a kindergarten. Mothers and children pass. This is a path to an elementary and a junior high school. There is a park across this building. Children play around here moving in and out of the opening. Children and people going to the hospital are crossing. Refreshment of mind and warmth are present here which cannot commonly be seen in hospitals.

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Project info:

Stripes(Comprehensive-medical-care building)
Site area:1658㎡
Total floor area:1012㎡
Photographer:Koichi Torimura