End of the Museum—12 Stations
Station 8: Hyogo Hostel
The Dark Side of Dwelling
Hyogo Hostel opened in 1950, as a temporary residential facility for lowly paid male workers, near the shipyards of Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in a residential neighborhood home to many dockworkers, and numerous residents passed through it over the years.
After nearly seven decades of housing laborers, it ceased operation last year. At first glance the three-story building, with rooms each containing four bunk beds, a large dining room, a leisure-time room, and a bathing room, resembles a student dormitory. However, on the beds, which were the only private spaces, empty sake bottles, horse-racing forms and other left-behind items remain to this day, giving a glimpse into the lives of workers who supported Japan’s rapid postwar economic growth. Schneider modifies the facility and questions the traces of its former occupants. Is their absence to be experienced?