GHOSTS OF KYOTO
DOCUMENTING A UNIQUE URBAN PHENOMENON
Kyoto, Japan - 2008 - on hold
During his early days in Kyoto, Richard Douzjian had noticed odd traces on the facades of innumerable contemporary buildings. These traces came in many different forms and materials: house silhouettes, pieces of roofs detached from their original structure, etc.
After further investigation into the matter, these traces turned out to be remnants of torn down traditional Kyoto townhouses, or Machiya, in Japanese.
During the time of the construction of the contemporary buildings baring the traces of the Machiya, the regulations allowed their total adherence to their neighbouring structures. Consequently, as the adhered Machiya was in turn torn down, it left behind these particular and peculiar traces, that Douzjian has coined “Ghosts”.
The strength and type of these Ghosts depended on the level of adjacency between the “dead” Machiya and the contemporary building.
In 2 years of “Ghost Hunting” Douzjian has collected around 100 samples categorising them into 6 different types based on the typologies of their appearance and location.
This work wasn’t concluded due to Douzjian's more pressing Doctoral research. Accordingly, he is currently in search of appropriate, creative ways to exploit this extensively collected data.
The photos on this page are just a small sample of the Ghosts.