Working in Tokyo has convinced me that, contrary to what people think, it is actually one of the world's most beautiful cities.
In Japan, there is less a culture of preserving old buildings than in Europe.
But in Japan, there's nothing like that, since the temple is made of wood. The divine spirit inside the building is eternal, so the enclosure doesn't have to be.
If you give people nothingness, they can ponder what can be achieved from that nothingness.
The computer offers another kind of creativity. You cannot ignore the creativity that computer technology can bring. But you need to be able to move between those two different worlds.
In Italy, there are so many significant architectural structures in history such as the Pantheon in Rome, or the Duomo.
You cannot simply put something new into a place. You have to absorb what you see around you, what exists on the land, and then use that knowledge along with contemporary thinking to interpret what you see.
The level of detail and craft is something that's inscribed within the original design concept. And so when I begin to draw, I know what kind of detailing I want the building to have.
When I design buildings, I think of the overall composition, much as the parts of a body would fit together. On top of that, I think about how people will approach the building and experience that space.
I hope America can also be the cultural leader of the world, and use this frontier spirit to lead and show others that we need courage to go places where we have not gone before.
At the same time, I would add that the American people have a lot of courage.
You can't really say what is beautiful about a place, but the image of the place will remain vividly with you.
There is a role and function for beauty in our time.
My hand is the extension of the thinking process - the creative process.
Since I am a Japanese man who's been building through the experience of Japanese architecture, my actual designs come from Japanese architectural concepts, although they're based on Western methods and materials.
All architecture has a public nature, I believe, so I would like to make a public space.
I believe that architecture is fundamentally a public space where people can gather and communicate, think about the history, think about the lives of human beings, or the world.
Spiritual space is lost in gaining convenience. I saw the need to create a mixture of Japanese spiritual culture and modern western architecture.
Japanese architecture is traditionally based on wooden structures that need renovating on a regular basis.
All those involved in the construction of an architectural design, from the architect to the builder, have an attachment to the architecture, although it's difficult to quantify the attachment.
Italy is full of historical buildings. And Europe holds a great history of philosophy from Greece until today. I read all those books and see these buildings, and I think of where I stand when I design my architecture.
Without this spirit, Modernist architecture cannot fully exist. Since there is often a mismatch between the logic and the spirit of Modernism, I use architecture to reconcile the two.
The speed of change makes you wonder what will become of architecture.
Japanese traditional architecture is created based on these conditions. This is the reason you have a very high degree of connection between the outside and inside in architecture.
I would like my architecture to inspire people to use their own resources, to move into the future.
When you look at Japanese traditional architecture, you have to look at Japanese culture and its relationship with nature. You can actually live in a harmonious, close contact with nature - this very unique to Japan.
I believe that the way people live can be directed a little by architecture.
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