中村好文(なかむら・よしふみ)建築家。1948年、千葉県生まれ。武蔵野美術大学建築学科卒業。設計事務所に勤務した後、東京都品川訓練校木工科で学ぶ。吉村順三設計事務所に勤めた後に1981年、レミングハウスを設立。1987年「三谷さんの家」で第1回吉岡賞受賞。1993年、「一連の住宅作品」で第18回吉田五十八賞「特別賞」受賞。現在、日本大学生産工学部建築工学科研究所教授。Yoshifumi Nakamura Born in Chiba, Japan in 1948, architect Yoshifumi Nakamura graduated from the Department of Architecture of the Musashino Art University.After working for an architect’s office, Nakamura studied at the Woodworking Department of the Tokyo Metropolitan Shinagawa Vocational Training Center.Following his stint at the office of architect Junzo Yoshimura, Nakamura launched the Lemming House, his independent architectural office, in 1981.He was awarded the 1st Yoshioka Prize for the Mitani Hut in 1987, and the 18th Isoya Yoshida Prize Special Award for his cumulative body of housing projects.

主な建築作品に、「上総の家」「美術館 as it is」「伊丹十三記念館」「Hanem Hut」がある。著書は『住宅巡礼』『住宅読本』(新潮社)、『住宅巡礼・ふたたび』(筑摩書房)、『中村好文 普通の住宅、普通の別荘』『中村好文 小屋から家へ』(TOTO出版)、『普請の顛末』柏木博と共著(岩波書店)などがある。Currently, Nakamura is a professor at the Department of Architecture and Architecture Engineering at the College of Industrial Technology, Nihon University.Nakamura’s major works include House in Kazusa, museum as it is, Itami Juzo Museum, and Hanem Hut.His publications include A Pilgrimage of Houses (Shinchosha), The House Reader, (Shinchosa), A Pilgrimage of Houses Once Again (Chikuma Shobo), Yoshifumi Nakamura: Ordinary Houses, Ordinary Cottages (TOTO Publishing), Yoshifumi Nakamura: From Huts to Houses (TOTO Publishing), and The Circumstances of Building (Co-authored with Hiroshi Kashiwagi; Iwanami Shoten).

「三越伊勢丹 もてなしの教室」第8回目の話し手は、建築家の中村好文さんです。“住む人の暮らしに寄り添い、建物としての新奇さよりも生きることの原点を

We are pleased to welcome architect Yoshifumi Nakamura as the host of our eighth installment of Mitsukoshi Isetan’s Hospitality Lessons. Rather than seeking novelties through his designs, Nakamura asks his clients how they want to live in their homes

見つめ直そう”とする建築思想に、世代を超え多くの人々の共感を集める中村さん。建築家としての実践から見えてくる “もてなし”のヒントをいただきました。

and ensures that the houses he builds complement the residents’ lifestyles. Nakamura’s design philosophy has earned the trust and respect of people across all generations. Nakamura shared his insights into hospitality, drawing on his experience as an architect.



Drawn by people and their lifestyles.

About 90% of my work is designing houses. I’ve designed about 220 houses so far. My goal is not to create so-called “architectural works,” but simply to design a house for my client and his family. In other words, I put priority on the residents of the new house and their daily lives. My interest in people’s lifestyles and their


living environment was what motivated me to specialize in residential designs. Some architects find the constant back-and-forth with clients troublesome and stay away from designing houses. I actually enjoy communicating with my clients and getting to know them. I design each house to suit my clients’ lifestyles and way of life, as though I’m custom-making a casual wear for my client like a tailor.



An architect’s hospitality.

An architect’s job is to provide hospitality to his clients by offering convenience and comfort through design and applying creative ideas to details like the lines of flow in a house. To put


it in a different way, it’s almost like taking care of—or serving—the clients. Perhaps hospitality is about putting ourselves in the shoes of the client. To design a house, the very first task is to gain an intimate knowledge of the residents and their lifestyles.



Making good use of every yen.

Sometimes I receive requests from young couples in their thirties. In many cases young people can barely afford the design fee. In other words, many of them have to spend all their savings for their new house. That’s why I always tell myself to make good use of every yen they pay me. In Seven Samurai, directed by Akira


Kurosawa, poor farmers hire samurai to combat bandits. In one of the scenes, the farmers offer samurai white rice even though they can only afford to eat millet themselves. Kanbei, the leader of the seven samurai played by Takashi Shimura, takes the bowl of rice in his hand, and declares, “I will not let this rice go to waste,” while a bright, heavenly light shines on the rice. It’s a very moving scene. That’s the spirit in which I want to approach all my design work.



Shopping spree in Venice.

On a different topic—I was in Venice for two months in June and July. I rented an apartment near the market (mercato)—the gastronomical hub of Venice. I had such a great time shopping there. I always went home with more than just the feeling of making a good purchase. Knowing that I just had a very special experience left me completely fulfilled and satisfied. I didn’t know that grocery shopping could be such an enriching experience. For example, once I went to a greengrocer to buy some tomatoes. When I pointed at the ones I wanted, he asked, “Are you making a sauce or salad?” And when I answered, “A salad,” he started picking tomatoes one by one, quickly yet carefully—as if he were caressing a baby’s cheek. He selected the ones with just the right firmness for salad and put them in a bag. With baby


leafy vegetables like rucola, too, he picked nice and fluffy ones from the pile, as if handling something very delicate with great craftsmanship. Then finally, he took my large tote bag and put all my purchases, starting with firm ones like potatoes, and handed me the bag—with a wink and a smile. His kind gesture made me feel as if a light came on in my heart. This didn’t just happen with greengrocers. Even at a cheese shop or meat shop, people took their time to get to know me. Naturally, I had to wait for a long time until it was my turn. But while I waited, I had fun just watching the store people interacting with other customers. Too accustomed to the impersonal shopping experience at supermarkets in Tokyo, perhaps I have greater appreciation for the genuine hospitality of small shops. In this sense, I think working in hospitality offers a challenging yet wonderfully rewarding career.



Getting to know myself again.

Since my younger days I’ve always enjoyed traveling by myself. In my line of work I have to spend a lot of time with my clients, staff, and contractors every single day. Most of the time I’m paying attention to other people and can’t spare the time to think about


myself. But when I travel alone, I have a conversation with myself—my “other half.” For example, I’d talk to myself like this: “I walked a lot today. Shall I eat something nice as a reward?” “How about going back to the hotel for a nap after lunch?” Traveling alone gives me a chance to get to know myself again. Having the time to listen to my own needs is one of the luxuries of traveling solo.



Practice makes perfect.

I try to sketch whenever I can. When I travel overseas, I sketch and take measurements of my hotel rooms and prepare a survey drawing. At first it was a conscious effort on my part to develop good spatial instincts required for an architect. And I also wanted to be prepared in case I receive an order from a hotel. Now it’s become a habit and I’m still keeping up with this practice.


Once I step into the room, I do a quick scan and make a rough estimate: “About 3.2 meters to the ceiling.” Then I take an actual measurement. It’s like testing myself: “You were off by 10 cm.” “This time you were right on the spot!” Thanks to the years of training, I can visualize a design in my head very quickly when I have to decide on room dimensions, for example: “A room with this level of brightness and a ceiling of this height would look like this.”



Feeling the atmosphere with your senses.

Many architects love to travel. I think this is because traveling is such a great learning experience. Particularly when I travel to foreign countries, I can observe and learn a lot about the lifestyles and the living environment of people with different cultures and customs. Landscape is also important, as are customs, practices,


and scenery. It’s important to go and see it for yourself—bask in the sun and feel the wind. No matter how beautiful the photo is, how high-quality the video, you can’t feel the place with your senses. So you need to visit the place. It’s important to feel and experience how dark the place is, or what it smells like. Feel it with your senses, instead of your head. Experience like this will be a real asset for you one day.



The sensibility of a Japanese architect.

I’m usually not very conscious of being “Japanese.” But there is no question that I have this sort of Japanese sensibility in my blood. It expresses itself in my view of the world. I wear Western clothes, and I sit on a chair, instead of sitting on


tatami—which I can hardly manage these days anyway. But when I think about the way I perceive a space, or the way I take in the scenery, I realize I’m very Japanese after all. My sense of architectural dimensions is also very Japanese. I’m not aware of this while I’m in the country, but I clearly sense my Japanese identity when I’m abroad.


Some thoughts from Mitsukoshi Isetan staff after hearing Mr. Nakamura speak:


I believe the key to Mr. Nakamura’s success is that he truly enjoys his work, and his attitude allows him to serve his clients well. Like he said, hospitality is all about making the customer happy and providing an uplifting experience. I want to do my best to develop products and design display areas with fun and creative ideas.


Mr. Nakamura’s hospitality lesson made me realize the importance of staying calm, so that I can provide customers with a fulfilling and satisfying experience. This lesson was a good reminder that I need to take care of myself—reading a book on a day off, relaxing in onsen, or just enjoying a quiet time.

家具、インテリアの使い手の方が常に心地いい空間で、心地いい生活をしてくださるよう、今後も顧客目線でコーディネートをしていきます。(三越日本橋本店 リビング・IDS営業部)

Mr. Nakamura inspired me to arrange our living section from our customers’ point of view so that our furniture and interior decorations will help customers create a comfortable living environment and a pleasant lifestyle.


What struck me the most was Mr. Nakamura’s view that a house is not a place to keep things but where our heart lives. My first goal is to turn customer service into a fun experience (for both myself and customers)!

中村さんは、すべての考えや行動の中で「人」が主役になっていました。人が起こす行動や居心地、空気感、気持ちの変化まで想像力を張り巡らせていることに驚きました。(三越日本橋本店 リビング・IDS営業部)

It was inspiring to learn how Mr. Nakamura always puts priority on “people” through all his ideas and actions. I was amazed by how he uses his imagination to anticipate people’s action, comfort level, perception of atmosphere, and even changes in feelings.

私が今後の業務に活かせると思った点は、「顧客視点で考えること」「前向きに仕事に取り組むこと」「新しい視点で考え提案すること」の3つです。中村さんのように、明るく取り組んでいきます。ありがとうございました。(伊勢丹府中店 営業統括部 リビング)

Three key points from Mr. Nakamura’s talk that I found useful for my work were: (1) Think from the customer’s perspective, (2) approach work with a positive attitude, and (3) offer suggestions from a new perspective. Mr. Nakamura inspired me to stay positive. Thank you!