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Toyo Ito & Associates, Architects
Toyo Ito was born in 1941. After graduating from the University of Tokyo Department of Architecture in 1965, he worked for the Metabolist architect Kiyonori Kikutake until 1969. In 1971, he opened his own office, Urban Robot, which was renamed Toyo
Ito & Associates, Architects in 1979. He has been a commissioner of the Kumamoto Artpolis since 2005. Among other prizes and awards, he was honored at the Venice Biennale with the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement in 2002 and for best pavilion in 2012 with the Japan Pavilion, for which he was a commissioner. Ito also earned the Royal Gold Medal from The Royal Institute of British Architects (2006), The 22nd Praemium Imperiale in Honor of Prince Takamatsu (2010), and The Pritzker Architecture Prize (2013).
Toyo Ito
Museum of Architecture
01 0304
06 07
01| 02| 06| 07| Photographs
and images by Toyo Ito & Associates, Architects
03| Photograph by Yoshiaki Tsutsui 04| Photograph by Daici Ano
05| Photograph by Ishiguro Photographic Institute
Toyo Ito Museum of Architecture, in Imabari, was built on a hilly site overlooking the Seto Inland Sea in the southwest of Omishima, a small island blessed with abundant nature with its orange groves and beautiful sunsets. The project consists of two buildings. Steel Hut hosts an exhibition of Ito’s works, and Silver Hut is a reenactment of Ito’s own house and offers workshop activities and events.
Steel Hut is situated on the ridge of a hilly site. During the early development stages, Ito generated forms of architecture that were related to the undulating ground. After various studies, the proposal developed into a geometric structure, which is independent from its surrounding landscape. Four types of three-meter-sided polyhedron modules, which can be freely assembled and closely packed, are used to create this building. The space has a centripetal quality that creates an experience similar to being within a sphere. When visitors move from one room to another, the inclined walls unfold panoramically.
Silver Hut was built in a valley on the site. The design of the structure employed the same methodology as Ito’s original, private house. The arch-like roof made from rhombic frames is bridged over beams placed on concrete pillars set at 3.6-meter intervals. In this building, there are three main spaces: an archive space for visitors to review approximately 90 of Ito’s architectural drawings, an outdoor workshop, and a space with furniture designed by Teruaki Ohashi.
On the museum’s exterior, there are three pieces of steel architectural models on display, as well as a warehouse named Timber Hut. Visitors
can stroll and appreciate them in the garden. A harmonized relationship between nature and architecture has been established with the small buildings and models sleekly standing against the scenery of small islands in the Seto Inland Sea.

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