Japan 2022 is an intensive four week course of study directed by Professor Matthew Jarosz and is designed to introduce students to important architectural and urban artifacts in Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto, and to examine the cultural context that shapes and informs them. Organized as a carefully calculated mix of old and new, students undertake a hands-on study of landmark buildings and urban spaces while simultaneously exploring cultural themes around the conflicts of modernism and heritage. Excursions to Kobe, Nara, Yokohama, Nagoya, Himeji, Nikko, Kanazawa, and Shirakawa follow similar themes. A one week field study in Kaga, Gokayama, Kanazawa or Miyama in mountainous central Japan, as well as a one-day excursion to seaside villages, elevate the study tour experience through collaborative workshops with local educators and craftsmen. The course includes recommendations for independent excursions to Mt Fuji and visits to Hiroshima and Nagasaki with an examination of culture, architecture, and urbanism.

Trip Director: Professor Matthew Thomas Jarosz, director, Historic Preservation Institute.

Professor Matthew Thomas Jarosz is best known for his architectural design work related to historic preservation. By combining his teaching and research with his involvement in community preservation projects, he has provided extensive opportunities for students to apply and expand academic learning. Students are challenged to understand preservation as a philosophical as well as technical field. His courses and research have included all areas of preservation from public policy, building documentation, heritage identification, preservation guidelines creation, conservation techniques, adaptive reuse, and economic feasibility. Matt has served as the coordinator of the Certificate in Preservation Studies program at SARUP since 2001, a focused area of study for Masters of Architecture students. He has also chaired Milwaukee’s Historic Preservation commission over the past 25 years of service.

As heritage preservation continues to expand throughout the world, Matt has focused his research and teaching interests on the matter of international initiatives and collaborations. While European-based attitudes about preservation are at the core of the program, Asian approaches are becoming an important field-study option for students. Since 1996 Matt has offered summer preservation study trips to Japan for 3 to 9 credits. Along with the students at UWM SARUP, trips are also open to students from other universities and have included participants from Harvard, Parsons, Pratt, Georgia Tech, UW, UIC, University of Illinois, and MIAD. This collaborative approach has successfully created student/instructor exchange programs at home as well as with universities in Japan.

The Japan trip has been a unique opportunity among schools of architecture in the US to study modern and pre-modern eastern architecture from an insider’s perspective. Professor Jarosz’ research focuses on urban morphology, historic building details, vernacular architecture, and the art of integration with the past. He regularly instructs graduate and upper-level undergraduate design studios and seminars at UWM. He has lectured internationally at Kogakuin University, Osaka University, Setsunan University, Osaka Institute of Technology, Wakayama University, and Ballarat University in Australia.