Architecture : Pet Architecture – Kristy W – Medium

Examples of Atelier Bow-Wow’s architectural drawings

Atelier Bow-Wow is an architecture firm based in Tokyo, Japan, that was founded in 1992 by Yoshiharu Tsukamoto and Momoyo Kajima. Considered as one of the most innovative architecture firms today, they are ‘household names’ in their field and are well known for their works ranging from architectural designs to urban researches and artworks created with the theory of ‘behaviorology’ in mind.

A page taken from ‘Pet Architecture Guide Book’ by Atelier Bow-Wow
Examples of existing Pet Architecture in Tokyo, Japan

First devised the term ‘Pet Architecture’ to address the buildings that have been created in the left over spaces in the urban area, they considered ‘Pet Architecture’ as ‘a study of urban Micro Projects that slip in between and around the existing urban fabric’. Bow-Wow had first realised the large number of unconventional buildings that existed in Tokyo while working on the project ‘Made in Tokyo’. After this discovery, they found more and began creating their own take on these types of buildings by utilising unconventional shapes and coming up with innovative resolutions for the important parts of the building like windows, air conditioning and drainage. Although the existing pet architectures albeit a bit strange, they are highly functional and in this case, it helps us realised the down to earth philosophies that underlie popular Japanese designs.

Pet Architecture Typology as seen in ‘Pet Architecture Guide Book’ by Atelier Bow-Wow
Photograph, Map of location and Projection Drawing

Atelier Bow-Wow approaches architecture differently as they create investigative projects in order to discover and note down the various typologies of Tokyo. They then publish in several books which encapsulates their ‘solutions’, documents the process, research and solution of how these ideas had come about. Included in the book are descriptions, a full page photograph of the space and a 3D sketch of the eccentric building. Bow-Wow also used different mediums as they made an initial list of buildings which had stood out in their everyday lives and proceed to question and discuss the question ‘What is Made in Tokyo?’. They then fixed their selection criteria (which involved connecting convincing examples and discovering their commonalities), which led to a clearer understanding of what type of architecture they were looking for (the sense of ‘offness’ (abstract)). Then photos were taken for quick and immediate record of initial thoughts and discoveries, then they drew various drawings to figure out the actuality of each example. Each drawing is drawn in single line isometric showing elements and internal structure while the related environment is explained by notes. Bow-Wow also drew incredible details and a human figure in order to show scale comparisons.

Examples of Pet Architectural Drawings

For this project, with Bow-Wow’s influence and their idea of seeing things as a whole (environment and architecture included) instead of just architecture on its own, I came up with my solutions for pet architecture that I think would benefit people who are located around Insearch. Like Bow-Wow, for a moment, I wanted to forget the categorical divisions between architecture, civil engineering and geography and instead sought to see things as simple, physical unities.

Vending Machine Shop by Kristy W

I decided to create a ‘vending machine shop’ in the small space between Novotel and Wilsons Parking is located conveniently between both UTS and Insearch. This shop is filled with nothing but vending machines for people to go in and buy things. This not only would be convenient for people who is staying at the Novotel, but students from both Insearch and UTS, and also the office workers in the building opposite, can enjoy a cheaper alternative for food, snacks or drinks.

Stand up Cafe by Kristy W

I have decided to design a stand up café in the area of the wide stairs outside the UTS Business School and Business Practice building in which it sells refreshments and food and will be a student run shop. Not only would students and tutors be able to have another option for meals, but it would also be more convenient to those who will have to commute to these buildings and any of the surrounding areas. Also with it being a student run shop, it allows students to earn both work experience, interact with others and earn pocket money to help support their everyday life.

Cafe Style Restaurant by Kristy W

In the small space located right outside the rounded end of Omnibus Lane and outside the back of the Powerhouse Museum, I have designed a café styled restaurant which utilises the large amounts of empty space at the back of the museum. The café restaurant would sell food and refreshments that is easily accessible for the Powerhouse museum staffs, residents living around the area students (studying at UTS Insearch and UTS). It would especially be beneficial for staff who are rushing for work or have a short break in between shifts.

News Agency and Souvenir Shop by Kristy W

I have decided to create a newsagency and souvenir shop in the gap between the wall and the railing of the stairs, located on Macarthur Street, opposite Omnibus Lane and Systrum Street. This souvenir shop not only will be a convenient alternate option for those visiting the Powerhouse Museum and leaving from the back but will also serve as a possible gift store. Students, staff and tutors alike can also more conveniently top up their opal cards and pick up stationary and necessities easily.

Student Lounge by Kristy W

I decided to create a student lounge in which students can have an alternative space to study, relax, game and spend time in between classes. Located on Hackett St, near Ultimo Travel Group, UTS Insearch and Study House, this space is built on top of existing buildings in which will be a closer and an alternate option for students turn to when the study house is full.

Final Project Picture:


Design Build Network 2009, Atelier Bow-Wow — Japanese Pet Architecture, Online Article/Interview, viewed 17 April and 18 April 2018, <>

Portico n.d., Architects You Should Know: Atelier Bow Wow, Weblog/Journal, viewed 17 April and 18 April 2018, <>

Arch Daily 2017, Atelier Bow Wow — Momoyo Kaijima on the Origins of Atelier Bow-Wow, Online Article/Interview, viewed 17 April and 18 April 2018, <>

ETH Zurich Department of Architecture 2013, Atelier Bow-Wow: Architekten, Japan, Online Presentation, viewed 17 April and 18 April 2018, <>

Luca Onniboni 2014, Pet Architecture — Atelier Bow Wow, Book review/Blogpost, viewed 18 April and 19 April 2018, <>

Idea Books n.d., Pet Architecture Atelier Bow Wow, Book Selling Website, viewed 18 April and 19 April 2018, <>

Mason White 2007, Atelier Bow-Wow: Tokyo Anatomy, Interview, viewed 20 April 2018, <>

Nai Boekverkopers/Booksellers n.d., Pet Architecture Guide Book — Living Spheres Vol. 2, Book Selling Website, viewed 22 April 2018, <>

AA School of Architecture 2015, Atelier Bow-Wow — At the AA, Video Recording, Youtube, viewed 24 April and 25 April 2018, <>

Tokyo Institute of Technology Tsukamoto Architectural Laboratory & Atelier Bow-Wow 2002, Living Spheres Vol. 2, World Photo Press, Japan


Havard University Graduate School of Design 2017, Architectural Ethnography: Atelier Bow-Wow, Havard University Graduate School of Design, viewed 24 April 2018, <>

West Space Journal 2013, Issue 2, Summer 2013 — Atelier Bow-Wow — Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, West Space Journal, viewed 24 April 2018, <>

Mason White 2007, Atelier Bow-Wow: Tokyo Anatomy, Archinect, viewed 24 April 2018, <>

Havard University Graduate School of Design 2017, Architectural Ethnography: Atelier Bow-Wow, Havard University Graduate School of Design, viewed 24 April 2018, <>

Ana Dana Beros, Alan Kostrencic, Roman Silje 2008, Made in Tokyo, Oris, (Online Presentation), viewed 25 April 2018, <[25]made-in-tokyo,448.html>

Andrew Choptiany 2013, Pet Pet Architecture, Tag Archives: Pet Architecture, viewed 25 April 2018, <>

TAKTAL 2015, Pet Architecture, Building in Leftover Urban Spaces, Agile City, viewed 25 April 2018, <>

Process Photos:


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