Tokyo museum undergoes face-lift / Le Corbusier building seeks world heritage status

posted on October 27, 2015

The National Museum of Western Art in Tokyo's Ueno Park, which local authorities and residents seek to have registered as a world cultural heritage site, has recently closed the exhibition rooms in its main building for renovations.

UNESCO's World Heritage Committee plans to hold deliberations in July next year, but the museum will remain closed through March 2016. This means it will be shuttered at a time when it will be crucial to boost momentum for the registration.

The government of Taito Ward and local residents have said they will do their utmost to raise public awareness, so that people's interest in the issue will not fade even while the facility is closed for the repair of air conditioners and other purposes.

The main building was designed by Le Corbusier, a master of modern architecture who was based in Paris. The museum opened in 1959.

Its distinctive design of pillars propping up the building creates a large space with a wonderful view on the first floor. Natural lighting from the ceiling and other distinctive features of Le Corbusier's work are evident everywhere. The museum was designated as an important cultural property by the nation in 2007.

Le Corbusier's architecture can be seen around the world, and Japan, France and five other countries jointly recommend 17 buildings, including the museum, as world cultural heritage sites. The registration of the buildings was discussed by the committee in both 2009 and 2011 but they were not accepted for registration. This will be the third attempt.

source by the-japan-news
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