The many admirers of the work of the Japanese writer Haruki Murakami will soon be able to visit the library dedicated to him in Tokyo, a space bringing together the literary archives and the discotheque of the most famous contemporary Japanese author.
Officially baptized “International House of Literature of Waseda University”, the place unveiled Wednesday and already nicknamed “Haruki Murakami Library” is to open to the public on 1is October. It is in this university of the Japanese capital that the writer, now 72 years old, was educated.
Arranged in part as a literary café, this library, which will also be devoted to the study of Japanese literature, but also international, notably contains a replica of the writer’s desk and a radio studio.
It is located on the Waseda campus, in a building that once housed amphitheatres and whose reconversion was entrusted to the world-renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who originally built the Suntory Art Museum in Tokyo, from the Regional Contemporary Art Fund of Marseille or more recently from the Olympic Stadium of the Tokyo 2020 Games.
Dressed casually in a navy jacket over a yellow t-shirt and tan pants, the writer, who usually hardly ever shows up in public – and declined to be filmed – spoke of this place loaded with memories for him.
Recounting how he was drying up classes at the time of the student protests that rocked Japan in the late 1960s, he hoped that this library could also serve as a place of exchange between academia, students and the General public.
“The teachers teach, and the students receive this education,” he said. ” It is important. But despite everything, I hope that the students will feel free to present their own ideas and to develop them in the form of concrete projects. “
“Honestly, I wish I had [ce bâtiment, NDLR] be built after my death. Now that he’s finished and I’m still alive, I’m a little nervous. What if I commit a crime? It would cause harm ”to the university, he added jokingly.