21_21 Design Sight

Tokyo, Kanto

A gallery where top designers transmit their messages to the world as “representatives of Japan”

21_21 (two one two one) DESIGN SIGHT is a design museum in the “Tokyo Midtown” complex. A low-rise building structure consisting of one ground floor and one underground floor highly distinguishes itself in Roppongi full of high-rise buildings.

It was Issey Miyake, a world-class fashion designer, who brought up the idea first. In 1988, he discussed the necessity of a design museum in Japan with creators such as Isamu Noguchi (painter, designer) and Tadao Ando (architect) at the Isamu Noguchi Exhibition. Isamu Noguchi passed away in December, 1988. When Issey Miyake, cherishing his wish, contributed an article “Let’s Create a Design Museum” to the Asahi Shimbun newspaper, he obtained support from Mitsui Fudosan Co., Ltd., Japan’s largest real estate developer, and many other companies. 21_21 DESIGN SIGHT was opened in the Tokyo Midtown in March, 2007.

It is hard to imagine the vast space inside the museum by its appearance as the greater part of building is located below ground level. Tadao Ando said he designed the building pursuing “architecture representing Japan.”

The directors are Issey Miyake; Taku Satoh, graphic designer and Naoto Fukasawa, product designer. In addition to them Noriko Kawakami, design journalist, became the associate director. All four of them are in charge of planning exhibitions. Each of them holds an exhibition on one theme twice a year. They also run a variety of programs inviting creators from home and abroad.


Inside the Garden of Tokyo Midtown, 9-7-6, Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo
11:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.(Last admission 7:30 p.m.)
Admission Fee
1,000 yen
[Walk]5-min walk from Toei Oedo Line and Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line Roppongi Station or Chiyoda Line Nogizaka Station

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