Fumihiko Maki : architect biography

famous architect : Fumihiko Maki

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Fumihiko Maki architect
Fumihiko Maki architect
Fumihiko Maki architect
Fumihiko Maki architect
Fumihiko Maki architect
Fumihiko Maki architect

Fumihiko Maki

Fumihiko Maki architect A major figure in Japanese architecture since the late 1950s, Fumihiko Maki is recognized for his architectural and urban design work as well as his contributions to architectural theory. Fumihiko Maki's work is characterized by his critical development of the modern model, his desire to create a contemporary urban architecture and spaces of public appearance, and his attempt to fuse design concepts of the Hast and West. Fumihiko Maki is known for Fumihiko Maki's rational approach, intelligent combination of technology with craftsmanship, and delicate details, all of which are illustrated in projects for cultural, residential, commercial, educational as well as office, convention, and sports facilities.

Fumihiko Maki is one of the few Japanese architects of his generation to have studied, worked, and taught in the United States and Japan. Following Fumihiko Maki's architecture studies at Tokyo University, Fumihiko Maki obtained master of architecture degrees at Cranbrook Academy of Art (1953) and the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University (1954). Fumihiko Maki worked with Skidmore, Owings and Merrill in New York (1954-55) and with Josep Lluis Sert (Sert, Jackson and Associates; 1955-58) in Cambridge, Massachusetts before establishing Fumihiko Maki and Associates in Tokyo in 1965. Awarded a Graham Foundation Fellowship in 1958, Fumihiko Maki went on two extensive research trips to Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and northern and southern Europe. Impressed by the formal and spatial organization of settlements, particularly the communities along the Mediterranean coast, Fumihiko Maki became interested in collective forms. Impressions from this trip led to his first urban design proposal, elaborated with Masato Otaka for the redevelopment of west Shinjuku in Tokyo - conceived not as an actual plan but as an illustration of "group form". Fumihiko Maki further developed this concept in Fumihiko Maki's investigations in Collective Form, published in 1964 as one of three paradigms of collective forms. In contrast to "compositional form" and "megaform", Fumihiko Maki's "group form" it a more flexible urban organization based on a human scale in which the parts and the whole are mutually independent an connected through various linkages.

A member of the Metabolist movement - a group of ambitious postwar Japanese architects who advocated the embrace of new technology with a concomitant belief in architecture's organic, humanist qualities—since 1959 Fumihiko Maki remained at the fringe of the group, concentrating on space and the relationship between solid and void and not on schemes for entire cities based on industrial lechnology. Fumihiko Maki's attempt at an integration of architecture and urbanism brought him close to Team X (ten), whose meeting Fumihiko Maki attended in I960 in southern France. Projects of the 1970s, which express Fumihiko Maki's idea of loosely connected and articulated parts, human scale, and transitional spaces, include the Kato Gakuen Elementary School (1972) in Numazu and the Tsukuba University Central Building (1974). The latter already features the forms ol the stepped pyramid and the cross, which play a major organizing role in the Iwasaki Art Museum (1979) as well as the YKK Guest House (1982) and Fumihiko Maki's later works.

The project that best reflects the idea of "group form" is also Fumihiko Maki's most renowned early work: the Hillside Terrace Apartment Complex in Tokyo, realized in six phases between 1969 and 1992. This residential and commercial ensemble is a rare example of a comprehensive long-term development of a large site in a Japanese city. It features a unified architectural style on an intimate human scale, with sidewalks and transitional spaces providing pedestrian access to shops and preserving privacy for the apartments on the upper levels.

Fumihiko Maki's preference for collaged and fragmentary composition, similar to the layered spaces of traditional Japanese architecture and gardens, is particularly evident in the facade of the Wacoal Media Center (1985). The so-called Spiral Building echoes the heterogeneous urban context of Tokyo and, like the TEPIA Building (1989), pays tribute to icons of 20th-century architecture and Cubist art in particular. The Spiral Building also illustrates the concept of phenomenological depth (oku): the main gallery space, surrounded by a gently sloping semicylindrical ramp, is situated at the hack of the building and shielded from the street by the entrance lobby, the cafe, and gallery space. Naturally illuminated from above, it can be seen from the street entrance. An intimate relationship between the inside and the outside is createtl by the broad staircase that shows in the facade. It is equipped with chairs and provides a rare (nonpaying) space in Tokyo for visitors to relax and watch the street below. Fumihiko Maki's effort to relate to the particular environment ol each place is further illustrated in Fumihiko Maki's National Museum of Modern Art (1986) in Kyoto, the facade of which features an orthogonal pattern in tune with the traditional grid of the city as well as a symmetry, a reference to the surrounding neoclassical buildings.

Fumihiko Maki's attempt at dealing a public architecture in Japan, where such a concept traditionally did not exist, is obvious in his sports and convention facilities. The expressive stainless-steel roofs of the Fujisawa Municipal Gymnasium (1984), the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium (1990), and the Makuhari Convention Center (1989 and 1998) assure these buildings of a strong presence in the city. The sports complex of the Metropolitan Gymnasium at Sendagya Station forms a dynamic landscape of three major individual buildings positioned to create an overall ensemble and connected through pedestrian spaces that provide ever-changing views of the scenery, recalling Japanese strolling gardens. Fumihiko Maki pays close attention not only to the overall form of the buildings but also to their structure and delicate detail, which, as Fumihiko Maki points out, give architecture its rhythm and scale.

A recurring aspect in Fumihiko Maki's designs is his masterful use of light, a quality that is further developed in Fumihiko Maki's works of the 1990s. The Graduate School Research Center (1994) at Keio University's Shonan Fujisawa Campus is characterized by its transparent entrance wall and the brise-soleil of perforated aluminum panels. The Tokyo Church of Christ (1995) features a shop-like translucent wall of light in the main hall, separating the building from the chaotic surrounding and providing a place for spiritual reflection.

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Together with Arata Isozaki, Kisho Kurokawa, and Kazuo Shinohara, Fumihiko Maki is one of the few Japanese architects of his generation to enjoy international success and fame. Fumihiko Maki's works outside Japan include the Center for the Arts (1993) at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco, the Isar Büropark (1995) near Munich, the Floating Pavilion (1996) in Groningen, and the projected Children's House in Poland. Fumihiko Maki has been honored with numerous prizes, including the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1993.

- Born in Tokyo, 16 September 1928. Studied in Kenzo Tange's Research Laboratory 1948-52; bachelor's degree in architecture 1952 attended the Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills;
- Michigan 1952-53, master's degree in architecture 1953;
studied at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, Cambridge, Massachusetts 1953-54, masters degree in architecture 1954;
- Married Misao Matsumoto 1960: 2 children
- Designer, Skidmore Owings and Merrill, New York 1954-55;
- designer, firm of (Josep Lluis) Sert, Jackson and Associates Cambridge 1955-58;
- principal, Maki and Associates, Tokyo from 1965.

Assistant professor 1956-58, associate professor 1960-62, Washington University School of Architecture, St. Louis, Missouri; associate professor, Harvard Graduate School of Design 1962-65;
- lecturer, department of urban design 1965-79, professor of architecture 1979-89, University of Tokyo;
- visiting professor, Harvard Graduate School of Design 1967-68;
- visiting professor, University of California, Berkeley 1970-71;
- visiting lecturer, Columbia University, New York 1976, 1984;
- visiting critic, University of California, Los Angeles 1976;
- visiting lecturer, Technical University of Vienna 1977;
- visiting critic, Harvard Graduate School of Design 1978-79;
- Eliot Noyes Visiting Professor, Harvard University 1983. Fellow, Graham Foundation, Chicago 1958-60;
- honorary fellow, American Institute of Architects 1980;
- founder and member, Metabolist Group, Tokyo;
- member, Japanese Institute of Architects. Awarded Pritzker Prize 1993.

Major works:

Hillside Terrace Apartment Complex (Phases I-VI), Tokyo, 1969-92
Kato Gakuen Elementary School, Numazu, Japan, 1972
Center for the School of Art and Physical Education, Tsukuba University, 1974
Iwasaki Art Museum, Kagoshima Prefecture, 1979 Maezawa Garden House (YKK Guest House), Kurobe, 1982
Municipal Gymnasium, Fujisawa, 1984
Wacoal Media Center (Spiral Building), Minato Ward, Tokyo, 1985
National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, 1986
TEP'IA Science Pavilion, Minato Ward, Tokyo, 1989
Makuhari Messe Convention Center, Chiba Prefecture, 1989 and 1998
Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, Shibuya Ward, Tokyo, 1990
Center for the Arts, Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco, 1993
Graduate School Research Center, Keio University, Shonan Fujisawa Campus, 1994
Isar Büropark, near Munich, 1995
Tokyo Church of Christ, 1995
Floating Pavilion, Groningen, 1996


1. "Some Thoughts on Collective Form," in Metabolism I960 (with Otaka Masato), 1960; reprinted in Structure in Art and in Science, edited by Gyorgy Kepes, 1965
2. Investigations in Collective Form, 1964
3. Fumihiko Maki 1: 1965-78 1978
4. "Japanese City Spaces and the Concept of 'Oku'", Japan Architect (May 1979)
5. "Modernism at the Crossroads", Japan Architect (March 1983)
6. "The Public Dimension in Contemporary Architecture," in New Public Architecture: Recent Projects by Fumihiko Maki and Arata Isozaki (exhib. cat.), 1985

other books about Fumihiko Maki

Fumihiko Maki
Author: Fumihiko Maki; 'conception, expression, construction' and " architecture and tradition" (The Pietro Belleschi Lectures)
Form, Modernism, and History: Essays in Honor of Eduard F. Seckler
Author: Fumihiko Maki: Investigations in collective form
Authtor: Fumihiko Maki: Some thoughts on collective form;: With an introduction to group-form,
Author: Fumihiko Maki; MAKI: Three projects in progress, architecture in place
Fumihiko Maki: A Bibliography (Architecture series--bibliography)
Architekten, Fumihiko Maki (IRB-Literaturauslese)
Fumihiki Maki: Recent projects 1984[-]87
Author: Fumihiko Maki: Movement systems in the city
Fumihiko Maki: Progetti E Architetture
Fumihiko Maki, Master Architect (Architecture Series, a 2023)
Arata Isozaki and Fumihiko Maki: A Bibliographic Update (Architecture Series--Bibliography, a 2369)
Kioku no keisho: Toshi to kenchiku to no hazama de
Fumihiko Maki: Japan's Younger Generation Architect

Title | Adolf Loos | Albert Kahn | Aldo Rossi | Alvar Aalto | Alvaro Siza | Antonio Gaudi | Carlo Scarpa | Eliel Saarinen | Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Owen Gehry | Fumihiko Maki | Gottfried Boehm | Henry Hobson Richardson | Charles Ormond Eames | Christopher Wren | Ieoh Ming Pei
James Stirling | Kenzo Tange | Kevin Roche | Le Corbusier | Louis Henry Sullivan | Louis Isadore Kahn | Ludwig Mies van der Rohe | Luis Barragan
Marcel Breuer | Mario Botta | Michael Graves | Oscar Niemeyer | Paolo Soleri | Renzo Piano | Richard Meier | Robert Venturi | Tadao Ando

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