Drawing inspiration from the Jomon period, Architecture studio Furuichi and Associates has completed a museum featuring a multi-faceted roofscape designed to evoke the inside of a cave. The Jomon ruins excavated in Miyahata, in the Fukushima Prefecture, made it mandatory to build a museum that could accommodate the research, investigation, exhibition and educational needs of the Jomon studies. Furuichi and Associates architecture firm conceived a building that faces and interpret some of these significant ruins.

The Jomon Period – around 100 B.C. – was a significant period in early Japanese history, where people lived as hunters and gathered in the northeast area of Japan, and there have been many significant findings and studies related to the Jomon people over the past 20 years.


In a beautiful natural landscape, the museum has a massive roof structure that lays on concrete walls and is made of a timber roof construction. Inspiration came from the caves where the Jomos used to live, and even when they started living in villages they kept on creating circular-plan houses, that resembled the image of caves. The entrance hall of the museum is marked by a covered wooden roof that recalls these ancient cave-like spaces. The structure is made out of wood panels and wooden beams.

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all images © Shigeo Ogawa