Built jointly by the Japanese government and the Japanese-Brazilian community, the Japanese Pavilion was donated to the city of São Paulo in 1954, in celebration of the IV Centenary of its foundation. At that time, Ibirapuera Park was being inaugurated. Oscar Niemeyer was responsible for the park's architectural design, but among the spaces idealized by the architect, one building does not show his features.
This is the Japanese Pavilion, whose main feature is the use of traditional Japanese materials and techniques, with reference to the Katsura Palace, the former summer residence of the Emperor in Kyoto.
Its project was carried out by Professor Sutemi Horiguchi (from Meiji University) and is based on modular wooden compositions (with sliding partitions, external and internal), organically articulated, and marked by the presence of the tokonoma (area intended for the exhibition of paintings, arrangements floral, pottery, etc), including chashitsu (room for tea ceremony), as well as other built-in niches, with shelves and small cabinets, decoratively arranged.
This is one of the few pavilions, outside of Japan, to keep its features in a perfect state of conservation. The other is located in the United States and is known as “Shofuso” – Solar do Pinheiro e do Vento, also built in 1954 and is currently installed in Fairmount Park, in Philadelphia.
Distinguished visitors visited the Japanese Pavilion and its garden displays some of the landmarks of these visits, such as the homage paid by the City of São Paulo to the Japanese-Brazilian community on June 18, 1978, on the occasion of the visit of the Crown Prince couple Michiko and Akihito.
Visited by most of the Japanese authorities who came to Brazil, the Japanese Pavilion is a monument that symbolizes Japan's feeling of gratitude to the Brazilian people for welcoming Japanese immigrants.