Text: Takaharu Tezuka

I want you to design the oldest architecture for the 22nd century. There are many divinations about oldness, but unlike trees or fossils there is no scientific way to specify the age. The age of architecture is too young for radiocarbon dating. There are only stories written by human beings. History is not a science but a memorandum. Memorandum is nothing more than data. It's nothing more than a result. What we want to discuss is not about the past but about the future.

There used to be the time when the building material was used to specify the age of architecture, but there are world heritage buildings composed of new materials mostly because of the restoration process. As long as it meets modern needs, it is necessary to replace some materials. There are many timber heritage architectures older than millennium in Japan, but most of the materials have been replaced through the years. There are always discussions about how much percentage of the building material needs to be original. The discussion is not going to be able to find the reason why people think the building is old.

People admire old architecture and cities. People travel to the other side of the planet to experience old cities. The travelers appreciate thick stone walls corroded by weather. The corrosion is called not defective but taste. People try to find authenticity to make sure it's not a fake. People can't easily be tricked by a fake. The past became a story, yet they don’t truly know how the town used to be. The city walls were made for their survival. There was no sentimental reason. Ruin is not architecture. A ruin is nothing more than a remnant of life. Ruin used to be architecture but not anymore. Architecture is not a thing but an event.

The function of architecture changes from time to time. There are many castles, houses converted to hotels. These changes are easier to imagine, because both contain duelings. Yet there are building types far from original usage. There are churches used as Bars. There is no more sacredness required. Most of the time, it is more expensive to convert old buildings than building new ones.

What makes an architecture to last long? The longevity has nothing to do with the durability of the material. Mostly old architecture is fragile and needs to be taken care of. Inclination of wall and floor by aging is sometimes appreciated to ensure the authenticity.  Functionality has nothing to do with the life span. Old architecture is usually inefficient compared to modern architecture.

Nothing was old at the beginning of its existence. St. Paul in London used to be the most avant-garde and technologically advanced modern building. If the architecture was built as old, the one wouldn't last long. What makes a city old? No architect knows how long the architecture lasts in the long term, when they build the architecture. Only Kronos knows which one is going to last long. How can we cheat time? How we architects can evade the crows of the Kronos.

Maybe the answer doesn't exist in the architecture itself nor materials. What you think is old is not old at all. There are more bacterias than ten times our body cells. What we call humans is nothing more than an administrator for the immune system to balance countless lifeforms. You were not the same person last year. None of the people around you are the same as last month. Most of the body materials are replaced every four months. It is possible that you are seeing only illusions. The water of a river is not the same as a second ago. The ground cover of mountains gets replaced and the shape of the angulation gets deformed by rain and wind. There is nothing permanent.


Join architects led by Takaharu and Yui Tezuka from Tokyo to explore and implement these ideas in the life of the picturesque small hill town of Grožnjan, August 5-13 2023!



Tokyo based Takaharu and Yui Tezuka in 1994 established one of the most innovative practices working today. They have extensive experience designing spaces for children, such as Fuji Kindergarten, which was named the best school in the world by OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) and UNESCO. Recently they were awarded for the best religious building in 2022 by Archdaily for their project of Niijima Gakuen Junior College Hall & Chapel.

“We set out on a pursuit not just in designing architecture, but in changing the world for the better through the means of architecture; a value we hold true to this day.

Architecture is not merely an object, but holds the power to change people's lives and societies.”

While their activity is based on architectural design, they hold lectures all over the world, receiving offers from OECD. Their theory on children`s environment is published as the "Yellowbook" from Harvard University.



Groznjan Summer School of Architecture will take place in Grožnjan, Croatia, August 5th-13th 2023


Groznjan Summer School of Architecture is open to students and professionals interested in architecture.


Groznjan Summer School of Architecture is international workshop with professors, guests and students from Croatia, Slovenia, Japan, France, UK, Germany etc.

The tuition language is English.


We expect that participants should bring their personal equipment such as laptop, tablets, drawing materials etc…


Groznjan Summer School of Architecture is organised in collaboration with Jeunesses Musicales Croatia in their facilities in Grožnjan. The Centre has several houses with two to six bedrooms with shared bathrooms and toilet facilities, several rehearsal rooms and the concert/ dance hall.


Participation fee for the applications submitted 30 days before seminar starts is 420 €. After that fee is 483 €

Participation fee does not include meals. The meals will be provided in ICC of Jeunesses Musicales. (According to your choice filled in the application form). Here you can see the prices of the meals: BREAKFAST 8 € • LUNCH 12 € • DINNER 12 €, full board: 30 €

Bank info: JM Croatia, Raiffeisenbank Austria d.d., Petrinjska 59 HR- 10 000 Zagreb,

IBAN: HR 9424840081100792293, SWIFT: RZBHHR2XXXX


If you don’t have your own transportation, you can arrive to Koper, Slovenia railway station, or Buje, Croatia bus station as well as airports in Trieste Italy or Pula Croatia. The nearest town with public transport is Buje. We would pick you up if its needed and if we are informed in advance about your arrival. You are expected to come to Grožnjan in the afternoon hours on August 5th 2023., and leave on August 13th 2023. Upon your arrival to Grožnjan, you need to visit the ICC JMC office Grožnjan, Umberta Gorjana 2. For the registration, we will need your ID or Passport, payment receipt, application form filled in and travel insurance receipt. After final presentation we will organize party where you will receive your diploma for participation.