Known as the father of modern architecture in Japan; refined the use of concrete for texture and structure. He was named honorary consul for the Czechoslovak Republic even after becoming a naturalized American citizen in 1916.
He studied with Josef Schultz and Jan Koula at the Czech Polytechnic Institute, followed by training at Trieste. He then was employed for three years with Cass Gilbert, during which time he participated in the construction of the Woolworth Building and Brooklyn's Austin, Nichols and Company Warehouse. He served in the U.S. Army in the American Expeditionary Force during World War I.
He received the Third Order of Merit of the Rising Sun by Emperor Hirohito.
He was forced to relocate to Prague in 1905 after his father's shop went into bankruptcy and his mother suddenly died. He married his wife and business partner, Noemi Pernessin, in 1914.
He worked for Frank Lloyd Wright, most notably on Japan's Imperial Hotel.