Pylon Icon: Hiroshi Sugimoto

The first stop on a hypothetical summer travel itinerary based on the transcendental architectural projects of Hiroshi Sugimoto would be The Glass Tea House Mondrian, as installed at the Palace of Versailles outside of Paris, France between October 2018 and February 2019 for ‘Sugimoto Versailles; Surface de Révolution.’ 

“I like to think that this tea house was built by Mondrian after he heard Sen no Rikyû speaking to him through the singing of the birds,” said Sugimoto at the time of the exhibition. 

From there we’d make our way to the Enoura Observatory overlooking Sagami Bay at the Odawara Art Foundation. The centerpiece, Sugimoto’s Optical Glass Stage, was built to catch the light on the morning of the winter solstice—but monuments to both solstices sit nearby. The Summer Solstice Light-Worship 100-Meter Gallery (which is 100 meters above the sea, and 100 meters in length) and the Winter Solstice Light-Worship Tunnel/Light Well. 

Of this site, Sugimoto has said: “My goal in making this complex was to reconnect people, visually and mentally, with the oldest of human memories.” 

And finally, the Confession of Zero at Castello di Ama in Tuscany, Siena in Italy. This marble and steel sculpture is based on the mathematical model for the number zero. 

“The realm of zero lies in that narrow interstice where the two points confront one another here in this eighteenth-century chapel where the mathematical model has taken up its discreet residence,” says Sugimoto. “Examine that invisible point with proper care for there can be found the mystery of existence.”