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Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse

The red steel ribbons of Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse

The vibrant red partitions contribute to the iconic design

Each steel ribbon is dual curved (twisted) to create the smooth curvature

■Iconic and Vibrant Steel Facade

‘Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse’ is a city-owned museum that introduces the history and charms of the Aomori Nebuta Festival. Located at the north of JR Aomori station where the city meets the sea, the museum is enclosed by ribbons of red twisted steel louvres that Kikukawa fabricated.
This iconic and vibrant façade embodies the concept of the museum, to strengthen the connection between the city, people, and people’s heart, and as a place that archives and exhibits the Festival.
The museum received the 32nd Tohoku Architectural Award in 2011, organized by the Architectural Institute of Japan (AIJ), for its contribution to the Tohoku (North East of Japan) area’s architectural culture and its eco-friendly design.

Click here to learn about other projects that received the 32nd Tohoku Architectural Award (Japanese Link)


■Functional Long Metal Ribbons

The red twisted partitions wrap the whole building to form an outdoor walkway, as a threshold between the mythical world of Nebuta and the city, as well as to cut glare in the summer and protect the building from the weather in winter. Each ribbon is twisted uniquely to form openings for light, views and passageways which creates a welcoming design.
These steel louvres are the marking feature of the iconic design of the museum, but they also contribute to the functionality of the building.


■Twisting the Long Ribbons

The twisted ribbons are fabricated from 300mm wide and 12m long 9mm thick steel plates, each dual-curved to create the smooth curvature.
There are over 730 pieces of ribbons with 220 patterns. As each ribbon is shaped uniquely, each steel plate was twisted individually based on elastic range data collected from steel casting experiments.
This twisting technology of extra-long plates was developed once Kikukawa was consulted by the designers. As a result, our twisting expertise now extends to extra-long steel ribbons.


■Heavy Corrosion Resistant Fluororesin Coated Louvres

The vibrant red louvres are finished with 170μ thick heavy corrosion resistant fluororesin coating.
Given the location of the project, the harsh coastal environment and snowy winters, urethane-based hardeners used in typical fluororesin coating would deteriorate from the salt and ultraviolet ray damage. Heavy corrosion resistant coating, on the other hand, relies on hardeners based on inorganic bonds, which results in high resistance in weather, salt and pollution and they are also eco-friendlier.
Thus, the selection and use of this heavy corrosion resistant fluororesin coating were necessary to create the long-lasting symbolic landmark in Aomori.

Product Material Metal Finishes
Steel Plate Screen Steel Heavy Corrosion Resistant Fluororesin Coating
ProjectNebuta Museum Wa Rasse
ClientAomori City
Architectd/dt Arch.
Frank la Rivière, Architects inc
molo design ltd
ContractorJoint Venture of Kajima Corporation, Fujimoto Construction, Kurahashi Construction
LocationAomori City, Aomori Prefecture