About the Exhibition

21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, exhibits "lab.4 Space Syntax"until  March 22, 2020. “Spaces” are where we live. We perceive spaces, by various means, and if a space changes, so do our behavior. Thus it would seem spatial layout and human behavior is closely related. Where might we find the key to illuminating that relationship? This fourth exhibition in the “lab.” series will search for this key, via research and analysis from the perspectives of connections and relationships.


The critical term here is “space syntax”: syntax referring to a system for deriving meaning based on the relationship between words. Space syntax is the name given to a thesis developed in the 1970s by Bill Hillier, a professor at The Bartlett (Faculty of the Built Environment) of University College London, and to the eponymous global firm engaged in its practice. The theory and practice of space syntax, which incorporates a scientific approach to analyzing spatial layout, and contemplates the relationship between human perceptions and behavior, has attracted growing attention in recent years as a new technique for the design of urban and architectural spaces.

While showcasing this space syntax theory and practice, for the duration of the exhibition, we will also be undertaking two research/analysis projects at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa. The first will be a study of indoor behavior. A video analysis technique employing new technologies such as machine learning will be introduced to observe the flow of people around pathways inside the museum, and when and where people stop and sit, to analyze the relationship between spatial layout, and human perception and behavior. The second will target the museum’s Exhibition Zones, surveying the routes taken by visitors. The idea will be to identify new possibilities for the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, by analyzing features of the museum’s spatial layout, and exploring their potential.

These research activities will be undertaken by enlisting help from the research supporters who also took part in the “lab.1 OTON GLASS” and “lab.2 Sight” exhibitions, with outcomes being collated and updated in the Design Gallery, venue for “lab. 4.” Perhaps that key illuminating the relationship between spatial layout and human behavior will be found in our transparent glass laboratory.

Event Info

Titlelab.4 Space Syntax
Period2019.10.12 (Sat.) - 2020.3.22 (Sun.)
10:00 - 18:00 (until 20:00 on Fridays and Saturdays)
VenueDesign Gallery / 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
ClosedMondays (Open on Oct 14, Nov 4, Jan 14, Feb 11, 24, ), and Oct 15 (Tue.), Nov 5 (Tue.), Dec 20 (Fri,) to Feb 3 (Mon.), Feb 25 (Tue.)
InformationPhone: +81-76-220-2800
Facsimile: +81-76-220-2802
E-Mail: info@kanazawa21.jp