The founder, Ishibashi Shojiro,
and contributing to society

Ishibashi Foundation founder Ishibashi Shojiro was born in 1889 in Kurume, Fukuoka Prefecture. At the age of 17 he took over the running of the family tailoring business, growing it into a nationwide concern by manufacturing jikatabi (split-toed heavy cloth work shoes with rubber soles), which he invented, and rubber shoes. In 1931 he founded the Bridgestone Tire Co., Ltd. (now the Bridgestone Corporation), which became the first Japanese company to produce tires domestically. He went on to grow the company into one of Japan's leading corporations.
At the same time, he involved himself in cultural work from a young age, leaving behind numerous achievements mainly in the area of the advancement of culture, including the construction of art museums and cultural centers and support for educational institutions.


In this corner we introduce the work Ishibashi Shojiro carried out for the benefit of society.

Born in Kurume, Fukuoka Prefecture.
Takes over the family tailoring business and transforms it into a specialist manufacturer of tabi.

Establishes the Nihon Tabi Company, and after developing the jikatabi (split-toed heavy cloth work shoes with rubber soles) and mass-producing rubber shoes, expands the business nationwide.
Helps found Kyushu Medical School (present-day Kurume University) by gifting the land and buildings.
Begins collecting in earnest the art in that will later form the Ishibashi Collection.
Establishes the Bridgestone Tire Co., Ltd. (now the Bridgestone Corporation).
Opens the Bridgestone Gallery (now the Artizon Museum) on the second floor of the Bridgestone Building in Kyobashi, Tokyo.
Establishes the Ishibashi Foundation, and becomes President of the Board.
Builds the Ishibashi Art Gallery as part of the Ishibashi Cultural Center and gifts it to Kurume City to mark the 25th anniversary of foundation of the Bridgestone Tire Co., Ltd.
Funds construction of the Japanese pavilion for the Venice Biennale.
Becomes a trustee of the National Museum of Western Art and the Tokyo National Museum.
Builds a Cultural Hall and Cultural Auditorium within the Ishibashi Cultural Center and gifts them to Kurume City.
Funds construction of a new building for the National Museum of Modern Art.
Passes away.