Tadao Ando, born in 1941, is a well-known architect from Japan. He spent most of his time outside his house. He was raised by his grandmother which name is also Ando. In his 10-17 he worked as a carpenter where he learned to produce something with woods and made models of aircrafts and ships. Ando had an unusual way of learning. He said, “I was not a good learner and he preferred having his own class outside the school. When I was 18 I started to visit temples and tea houses around Kyoto and Nara. There are so many awesome traditional buildings. At that time I was studying about architecture by visiting a building directly and reviewing it through
His interest in the architectural world began at age 15. At that time he got books on sketches by an architect, Le Corbusier. Then, he redrew those sketches while imagining what was actually on Corbusier’s mind when working on a design. Around the year 1962-1969 Tadao Ando visited many places in the United States, Europe, and Africa. This was the period of the maturation of his architectural ideas before establishing Tadao Ando Architectural & Associate in Osaka in 1969. He has won several prestigious architectural awards such as Arlsberg Prize (1992), Pritzker Prize (1995), Praemium Imperiale (1996), and Gold Medal of Royal Institute of British Architects (1997).
Almost all of Tadao Ando’s designs have a simple character. The first impression when looking at his architecture works is the material. He often used large and solid wall as a room barrier. Another impression is the existence of void because the visitors can only feel the light in his building. Currently Ando has become one of the most influential architects and an inspiration for many architects and students of architecture worldwide.
Here are some interesting facts about Tadao Ando’s career.
- He used to be a boxer.
- He has a twin, and her sister’s name is Takao Kitayama.
- He has a consultant and design firm, Kitayama & Company in Tokyo.
- He learned about architecture by himself (self-taught) by reading books and observing the works of architects during his trip to many countries.
- He was studying at Setsu Mode Seminar art school.
- He ever worked at an architecture firm and joined an interior course as well.
- In 1969 he established the architecture firm Tadao Ando Architects & Associates di Osaka.
One of Tadao Ando’s works which is very phenomenal is Church of the Light. It is a church with a simple geometric shape which is characterized by the background of a light cross made out from the wall hole. The following are some pictures of the beauty of Church of the Light.
images credit: mooponto.com