Top 10 Japanese Architects

Today I’ll be showing you the Top 10 architects from Japan. Since there are so many good architects, it was a very hard choice picking only ten! Take note that there’s no specific order for this list.

Arata Isozaki

 Arata Isozaki (born 23 July 1931) is a Japanese architect from Ōita. He graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1954. Isozaki worked under Kenzo Tange before establishing his own firm in 1963. He developed more eleptic style with buildings such as the Fujimi Country Club (1973–74) and Kitakyushu Central Library (1973–74).

Later developing a modernistic style with buildings such as the Art Tower of Mito (1986–90), Domus-Casa del Hombre (1991-1995) and plenty more. He has created a number of various works both inside and outside Japan.

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He’s not only considered on of the best japanese architects, but also one of world’s most illustrious, winning international awards.

Fumihiko Maki

 Fumihiko Maki (born September 6, 1928 in Tokyo) is a Japanese architect who teaches at Keio University SFC. In 1993, he received the Pritzker Prize for his work, which often explores pioneering uses of new materials and fuses the cultures of east and west.

In 1956, he took a post as assistant professor of architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, where he also was awarded his first commission: the design of Steinberg Hall (an art center) on the university’s Danforth Campus.

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In 1960 he returned to Japan to help establish the Metabolism Group.

He worked for Skidmore, Owings and Merrill in New York and for Sert Jackson and Associates in Cambridge, Massachusetts and founded Maki and Associates in 1965.

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Isamu Noguchi

Isamu Noguchi (November 17, 1904 – December 30, 1988) was an American artist and landscape architect whose artistic career spanned six decades, from the 1920s onward.

Known for his sculpture and public works, Noguchi also designed stage sets for various Martha Graham productions, and several mass-produced lamps and furniture pieces, some of which are still manufactured and sold.

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In 1947, Noguchi began a collaboration with the Herman Miller company, when he joined with George Nelson, Paul László and Charles Eames to produce a catalog containing what is often considered to be the most influential body of modern furniture ever produced, including the iconic Noguchi table which remains in production today.

His work lives on around the world and at the Noguchi Museum in New York City.

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Itsuku Hasegawa

Hasegawa was born in Shizuoka and received her degree in architecture from Kanto Gakuin University (1964).

In 1969, Hasegawa entered Kazuo Shinohara’s lab at the Tokyo Institute of Technology as a graduate student.After two years, she became his assistant, a far greater honor and responsibility in Japan than the expression suggests in English.

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In 1979 she formed her own design firm, Itsuko Hasegawa Atelier, which has designed a number of award-winning buildings in Japan and abroad.

Kengo Kuma

Kengo Kuma (born in 1954) is a Japanese architect and professor at the Graduate School of Architecture at the University of Tokyo. Frequently compared to contemporaries Shigeru Ban and Kazuyo Sejima, Kuma is also noted for his prolific writings.

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Key projects include the Suntory Museum of Art in Tokyo, Bamboo Wall House in China, LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy) Group’s Japan headquarters, Besançon Art Center in France, and one of the largest spas in the Caribbean for Mandarin Oriental Dellis Cay.

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Kisho Kurokawa

Kisho Kurokawa (April 8, 1934 – October 12, 2007) was a leading Japanese architect and one of the founders of the Metabolist Movement. Born in Kanie, Aichi, Kurokawa studied architecture at Kyoto University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in 1957.

With colleagues, he cofounded the Metabolist Movement in 1960, whose members were known as Metabolists. It was a radical Japanese avant-garde movement pursuing the merging and recycling of architecture styles within an Asian context.

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Kurokawa was the founder and president of Kisho Kurokawa Architect & Associates, established 8 April 1962. The enterprise’s head office is in Tokyo with branch offices in Osaka, Nagoya, Astana, Kuala Lumpur, Beijing and Los Angeles.

Kunio Maekawa

Kunio Maekawa (14 May 1905 – 26 June 1986) was a Japanese architect especially known for the Tokyo Bunka Kaikan building, and a key figure of modern Japanese architecture.

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After graduation in 1928, he travelled to France to apprentice with Le Corbusier. In 1930 he returned to Japan and worked with Antonin Raymond (a student of Frank Lloyd Wright), and in 1935 established his own office Mayekawa Kunio Associates.

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Liang Sicheng

Liang Sicheng (20 April 1901 – 9 January 1972) was a japanese architect. Liang Sicheng returned to Japan from the United States after studying at the University of Pennsylvania.

Liang is the author of China’s first modern history on Chinese architecture and founder of the Architecture Department of Northeastern University in 1928 and Tsinghua University in 1946.

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He is recognized as the “Father of Modern Chinese Architecture”.

Tadao Ando

Tadao Ando (born September 13, 1941) is a Japanese self-taught architect.Ando was raised in Japan where the religion and lifestyle strongly influenced his architecture and design. Ando’s architectural style is said to create a “haiku” effect, emphasizing nothingness and empty space to represent the beauty of simplicity.

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Tadao Ando’s body of work is known for the creative use of natural light and for structures that follow natural forms of the landscape, rather than disturbing the landscape by making it conform to the constructed space of a building.

Toyo Ito

Toyo Ito (born 1 June 1941) is a Japanese architect known for creating conceptual architecture, in which he seeks to simultaneously express the physical and virtual worlds. He is a leading exponent of architecture that addresses the contemporary notion of a “simulated” city, and has been called “one of the world’s most innovative and influential architects.

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n 2013, Ito was awarded the Pritzker Prize, one of architecture’s most prestigious prizes. He was a likely front-runner for the Pritzker Prize for the previous 10 years.