Kazuyo Sejima Suimei

“It can be said that Hama-rikyu is a garden that coexists with water. I thought about adding water into that scenery, to depict modern society. The winding stream looks as if it is still when viewed from a distance. But when you look at it closely, you realize that it is flowing quietly. This slowly flowing water represents the connection between the past, present and future.” (Kazuyo Sejima)

Suimei designed by Kazuyo Sejima


Kazuyo Sejima (1956-) was particular about creating a pavilion somewhere where you could sense both history and modernity at the same time. The Hama-rikyu Gardens is a representative Daimyo Teien (feudal lord’s garden) of the Edo Period, with a tidal pond (a type of pond formed with seawater that changes its shape depending on the rise and fall of the tide) and two duck hunting sites. Sejima was convinced that this traditionally styled garden which stands in stark contrast to the skyscrapers of the neighboring Shiodome district is “a place where you can access both historical and modern aspects of Tokyo”. She created a pavilion inspired by a winding stream (a type of waterway built in gardens of the Heian Period), to match the various waterways that are in the Hama-rikyu Gardens. The shallow water filled inside the waterways created using mirror surfaces, glitters as it reflects the sky and surrounding scenery. The pavilion is installed on the former site of the “Enryo-kan” State Guesthouse of the Meiji Period. The title “Suimei'' is a word that describes how clear water shines beautifully under the light of the sun and moon. It has been named with the hope of imagining a bright future from the ever-changing water surface, which at the same time reflects the history of Tokyo.


Venue: Hama-rikyu Gardens (Site of Enryo-kan)
Hama rikyu-teien, Chuo-ku, Tokyo  from 〈Otemon Entrance〉 of Hama-rikyu Gardens
Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00 (Admission is until 16:30)
Note: Entry fee for Hama-rikyu Gardens is required. For details on how to enter the garden, please visit the Hama-rikyu Gardens offcial website. (Advance reservation may be required to enter the garden.)
Note: There is no dedicated parking lot. Please refrain from coming to the venues by car as parking is limited in the neighborhood.

Please Note:
Do not touch the pavilion.
Do not enter the lawn surrounded by roping.
Please try not to stay too long to obstruct the passage of other visitors.
Hama-rikyu Gardens are stated as a National Special Place of Scenic Beauty as well as a Special Historic Site. Please follow the rules set by the garden.
Pets are not allowed in the garden (except for service dogs).
Hama-rikyu Gardens are no-smoking site. There are no smoking areas.


Kazuyo Sejima
Born in 1956. She got her master’s degree from Japan Women’s University. She established Kazuyo Sejima & Associates in 1987 and SANAA with Ryue Nishijima in 1995. She often uses acrylic and metal materials and makes space and people connecting loosely. Their representative works are 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, The New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, Le Louvre-Lens, The Sumida Hokusai Museum (as Kazuyo Sejima & Associates) and her latest work Department of Art Science at Osaka University of Arts (as Kazuyo Sejima & Associates). In 2010, she was appointed director of architecture sector for the Venice Biennale as the first Japanese and female director. SANAA got many prizes including the AIJ Prize, the Golden Lion for the most remarkable work at the 12th Venice Biennale in 2004, the Pritzker Prize in 2010, and Sejima got Medal with Purple Ribbon in 2016.