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Anime Architecture

Imagined Worlds and Endless Megacities

Stefan Riekeles


The definitive visual guide to the cityscapes and buildings of the most celebrated and influential anime movies

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The influence of anime, one of Japan’s most successful cultural exports, has been felt across cinema, literature, comic books and videogames for decades, yet the artwork behind the genre remains somewhat enigmatic, particularly in the pre-digital period before the early 2000s. A genuine behind-the-scenes journey into the original background paintings, storyboards and early drafts of the industry’s most revered directors and illustrators, Anime Architecture presents the otherworldly buildings and megacities of these visionaries as celebrations of – and lessons for – the near future.

Includes exclusive material from:

AKIRA, 1988
Patlabor: The Movie, 1989
Patlabor 2: The Movie, 1993
Ghost in the Shell, 1995
Metropolis, 2001
Innocence, 2004
Tekkonkinkreet, 2006
Rebuild of Evangelion, 2007, 2009

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'No shortage of beautiful imagery ... a welcome bit of architectural escapism'
Creative Review

''Riekeles's eye is fixed not on these films' zany protagonists - murderous bikers and cyborg assassins - but beyond, on the intricate architecture and moody skies of the background artwork, only ever glimpsed fleetingly'
Times Literary Supplement

'A true labour of … the artistry on display is staggering, especially in the fine lined concept designs by the likes of Shuichi Kusamori and Shinji Kimura'

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Quarterbound (no jacket)

Size: 28.0 x 21.5 cm

Extent: 256 pp

Illustrations: 400

Publication date: 22 October 2020

ISBN: 9780500294529

Contents List

Introduction • 1. The Multilayered Landscape • 2. Tokyo Scale: The Endless Megacity • 3. Special Effect City • Biographical Information

About the Author

Stefan Riekeles is a curator based in Berlin. He has been the Artistic Director of the Japan Media Arts Festival Dortmund, and curated the 2011 exhibition ‘Proto Anime Cut’. He served as the Programme Director of the International Symposium on Electronic Art 2010 and curated exhibitions for transmediale festival for art and digital culture Berlin. He holds an MA in Culture Studies and Audio Communication Science from the Humboldt University and the Technical University in Berlin.