Hirotoshi Itoh is a Japanese stone sculptor who is known for his humorously imaginative ideas and incredible ability to make stones look soft, flexible, and light. In 1982, he graduated from the prestigious Tokyo National Fine Arts University where he experimented with turning cold hard metals into something warm and soft. Upon his graduation from the university, he returned to his family’s stone masonry business: Creating tombstones, memorials, and religious statuary. However, in his personal time, he uses his imagination to create mind-bending and unconventional works of art.
In his personal work, he uses various stones found at a riverbank near his home (in Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture, Japan). Using traditional stone masonry equipment such as chisels and saws, he transforms rock, granite, and marble into garments, coin purses, bread, laughing faces, and other surrealistic objects.
As he carves, Itoh retains and optimizes the original shapes of the stone, yet goes further by juxtaposing the stones with unrelated objects such as dentures, fibers, shells, and various metal objects.