terracotta yatai



Takeshi collaborated with Greg Ross and 12 MArch students from Central Saint Martins to build a mobile Yatai using terracotta in the summer 2015. 

Construction of building can be divided into two distinctive elements, structure and cladding. The cladding acts as a wearing surface, which protects the structure inside from weathering. The cladding forms a façade, aesthetic expression of the building to the outside world. 


Victorian architectural terracotta is the cladding system managed to combine hand crafted aspect and mass production. The multiplying nature of terracotta casting together with the artistic three-dimensional ornamentation, it provided unprecedented amount of detailing into buildings without relying on the skill of master stonemasons or carpenters. Natural History Museum in South Kensington is a great example of this kind. Its surface is covered with ornaments and sculptures based on the theme of natural history. 

Yatai is a typology of mobile architecture in Japan. It is a small stall, which opens up for serving food, and turning public realm into a temporary outdoor restaurant. It is a container, carrying necessary cooking equipment and seating. It is a minimum space, which closes into a compact box, neatly stored away for next use.

We built a Yatai collectively, using the architectural terracotta as cladding. The main focus of the work is to design and make bespoke cladding pieces for specific parts of Yatai; roof, chimney, corners, wall panels, handles etc. We needed to think how the terracotta pieces are attached to the substrate. It was about designing the fixing as well as the cladding itself. We also appropriated the clay material to the internal elements for cooking and eating, such as oven, preparation surfaces and eating counters.

We cerebrated the completion of our Terracotta Yatai with cooking pizza in Kings Cross.



Takeshi Hayatsu, Gregory Ross


Jen McPherson, Ilaria CatalanoNeba SereCarla MotolaVolha KhadanovichAlma MpungweRobert GaukrogerCarlotta NovellaKatherine SpenceJames BeadnallKuo-hui LiuHajir Kheder


Hathern Terra Cotta


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