He was a truck driver and boxer, he taught himself architecture as he didn't like school and preferred to study his way, visiting and analyzing the works. Tadao Ando has consolidated his name by performing an architecture that's pure, allowing the user to experience space and nature in his works.

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Tadao Ando was born in Osaka, Japan, on September 13, 1941 and was raised by his grandmother. At 10 to 17 years of age, he worked with a local carpenter where he learned to work with wood, building model airplanes and ships.

School-wise, Tadao chose his own method of learning, outside the classroom through visits to buildings in the region and always with a lot of reading about architecture. He studied architecture at his own pace and also visited other customs, cultures and buildings in Europe and North America.

“I was never a good student. I always preferred learning things on my own outside of class. When I was about 18, I started to visit temples, shrines and tea houses in Kyoto and nara; There's a lot of great traditional architecture in the area. I was studying architecture by going to see actual building, and reading books about them.”

Influences

Architecture had taken over his mind at 15 when he bought a book of drawings by Le Corbusier. Tadao went over the sketches of the book until the paper become black and while drawing, he thought about how he had arrived at that concept, which would have arisen those brilliant solutions.

In addition to Le Corbusier, the books purchased by Tadao were from the likes of Mies Van der Rohe, Alvar Aalto, Loius Kahn and Frank Lloyd Wright.

Works

Certainly his experiences in North America and Europe helped Tadao Ando to form ideas and concepts about architecture and what he could do in his projects. In 1969 he founded the firm "Tadao Ando Architect & Associates."

Tadao established in his work relationships between three main elements: order, people, and emotive force. He does this very well by using natural elements such as light, which is an important factor in all his projects, the sky and the wind.

Azuma House, Osaka, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Rokko Residential Conjunction, Kobe, Japan

Dia do Arquiteto: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Church of the Light, Osaka, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Church on the Water, Tomamu, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Langen Foundation, Neuss, Germany

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

“As an architect you have to do your best work for any project, but for me the most satisfying thing is when architecture can do something to make people's lives better, to inspire them.”

Atelier in Oyodo, Osaka, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Modern Art Museum of Forth Worth, Forth Worth, USA

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, St Louis, USA

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Armani World Headquarters, Milan, Italy

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Vitra Seminar House, Weil am Rhein, Germany

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Stone Hill Center, Williamstown, USA

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Water Temple, Awaji Island, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Museum of Wood Culture, Kami, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Koshino House, Hyogo, Japan

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Japan Pavillion, Expo `92, Sevilha, Spain

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Ryotaro Shiba Memorial Museum, Higashiosaka, Japan

Dia do Arquiteto: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

“... in my life I have done many things, at one time I was a boxer... I was never a good student. I always preferred learning things on my own.”

Awaji-Yumebutai, Hyogo Prefecture, Japan

Dia do Arquiteto: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

Architect Day: Tadao Ando

About the author of this post

My name is Marcelo Seferin, I’m an architect from Porto Alegre, Brazil and I’m the chief architect at Seferin Arquitetura, an office that works with architecture, interior design and sustainability projects.