Makoto Fujiwara (1938 - 2019) came to Norway in 1982 and immediately fell in love with the blue Larvikite and its stone industry. Together with the quarry owner Thor Lundh and many friends and supporters, he established the International Larvikite Sculpture Symposium Norge and, as a Japanese who taught as a sculptor professor in Germany, he was in addition able to organize his working place in the middle of the stone industry in Norway. After his retirement 2003, Makoto Fujiwara worked on his Larvikite sculptures in the Lundhs Stålaker quarry/Larvik until he passed away in 2019. The Symposium House was his Norwegian domicile, where he received guests and, above all, worked closely with former students and artist friends from Japan and Germany. As a professor of stone carving, he never left the path of teaching, sought exchange with like-minded people and drew his inspiration from stone in order to share it and to transform it into his art work. His Japanese roots reminded him of the Norwegian nature with the dense, deep pine stands, rocky coasts, geological diversity and the harmony with nature. Here Makoto found the dialogue with the stone.
Makoto Fujiwara was born in Gifu, Japan in 1938. He grew up with two older brothers - the father was a Buddhist priest - in a temple complex, very close to the Kanayama megaliths, which impressed him even as a child.
Makoto studied at the municipal academy of fine arts in Kyôto, later in Paris and Vienna with Fritz Wotruba, and in 1970 he was a participant in the symposium organized by Karl Prantl in St. Margarethen in Burgenland/Austria. In 1974 he taught stone carving at the University of the Arts in Berlin before he was appointed professor at the University of Hanover in 1988.
It was no coincidence that Makoto worked with stone all his life, exclusively with stone, especially with Larvikite since 1985 in Larvik/Norway, where he was able to work in the quarry of Lundhs. For Makoto, stone was more than just a material. The stone itself was the subject of his work. He changed it in an endless approach in order to bring the stone to its best advantage. There was no third, nothing figurative. Makoto worked with hammer and chisel, broke and splitted stones, shaped and polished them.