Japanese artist Hirotoshi Ito uses solid stones as perfect canvas to create a unique series of sculptures with surreal optical illusions, from loaves of bread to purse with opened zipper, even anthropomorphizing a hard rock with bizarre rows of teeth. From 1978 to 1982, Hirotoshi Ito learned the work of metal in the Tokyo National Fine Arts University, influenced by surrealists such as René Magritte and Salvador Dalí, who challenged and breathed new life into traditional stonemasonry after graduation. Hirotoshi Ito collects suitable stones from a river bed in neighborhood, combining some other materials, and then transforms them into playful and impressive artworks at his studio in Matsumoto, Nagano Province, which are also available on his webshop. Hirotoshi Ito describes himself as an artist and artisan, “Although I work with various kinds of stones, most of my work consists of optimizing a stone’s original shape… While utilizing the image that a stone is hard, I think even from now on I would like to express the warmth and humor…A smile on the beholder’s face is the main motivation for my work,” the artist said on his website.
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