Toyo Ito

Widely regarded as one of the most “innovative and influential” modern architects, Toyo Ito is known for his dedication to conceptual architecture, creating physical and virtual forms that express his notion of the “simulated city.” Born to Japanese parents in Seoul, Korea, Ito’s passion for architecture began at University of Tokyo, where he was awarded a top prize for his proposal for the reconstruction of Ueno Park. His inventive and open style gained recognition and in 1971, Ito opened his own architecture studio—Urban Robot (Urbot.) His most revolutionary project to date is said to be Sendai Mediatheque (2000), a library in Sendai, Japan with an open glass layout. Emphasizing “structural lightness and transparency,” Ito’s transformative style shaped the landscape of contemporary architecture.

Throughout the course of his career, Ito has received numerous awards including The Royal Institute of British Architects’ Royal Gold Medal in 2006, the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 8th Venice Biennale International Exhibition in 2002, and the distinguished Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2013. His work has been shown in a number of institutions including The Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark, Suermondt-Ludwig-Museum in Aachen, and Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin.