Visit the Europe Readr outdoor installation in Tokyo, created with recyclable materials. Designed as a public gathering space, it enables citizens to access a digital library of EU literature and engage in intergenerational exchange on “green” topics.
Europe Readr meets Sentsuku
On 18 October 2021, an outdoor Europe Readr installation opened in the Tokyo suburbs of Kita-Senju, which will function as an open-air library and a gathering space inviting local residents and other visitors to read works of European and Japanese literature. The installation built of recycled materials and designed in cooperation with the local community is erected in front of a formerly abandoned house, now converted into a community space for all generations called Sentsuku. Visitors to the open-air library will be able to read in the shade cast by a newly planted Slovenian linden tree.
At the opening ceremony, the Slovenian Ambassador to Japan, Dr Ana Polak Petrič, stressed that the outdoor library was the heart of the Europe Readr project in Japan promoting diversity, solidarity and understanding. She also noted the strong symbolic meaning of meeting under a linden tree during the pandemic, which is causing alienation and loneliness, and at a time when the community spirit in residential areas is disappearing and ceding place to an individualistic atmosphere.
The open-air library installation was designed and created by the co+re architects together with students of the Meiji, Keio and Japan Women’s universities in cooperation with the local ARCO architects supporting a new paradigm in Japanese urban planning “machi-zukuri”, which encourages the participation of local residents. The installation is a welcome addition to the Sentsuku gathering space featuring a small café bar, a cooking studio and an event room suitable for small-scale exhibitions.
The open-air library project is in harmony with the endeavours of the Kita-Senju architects to tackle the phenomenon of an individualistic society by transforming abandoned houses into open community spaces, where various events and projects could once again connect locals and re-create the once flourishing residential communities.
Europe Readr digital library is waiting for you!
The new book by Tiziano Fratus, the author of L’Italia è un bosco (Italy is a Forest) and Il libro delle foreste scolpite (The Book of the Carved Forests), is a modern fairy tale, a sort of philosophy of the forest that emphasises his inseparable link with nature.