When looking back on the rich history of Japanese architecture, some of the things that immediately come to mind are complex wood joinery, hipped roofs and intimate experiences with water. Today, Japan is on the cutting edge of architectural innovation in many different building types—skyscrapers, office buildings and micro-housing to name a few. However, this Instagram account chooses to highlight an extremely unappreciated building type: public restrooms.
Cheekily named @toilets_a_go_go, the account promises followers the “discovery of Japanese toilets,” showing everything from bathroom pavilions inspired by Japanese architecture to metabolist-like toilet pods. If the account name did not already reveal the identity of the structures, one might even mistake many of them for something else. Public restrooms are typically overlooked or even seen in a negative light, but this account showcases the power of architecture to take a neglected building type and show that even a trip to the bathroom can (and should) be beautiful.