Shohei Baba's contribution to Japanese pro-wrestling is commemorated with a new statue on Naka Dori in the Marunouchi shopping and business district close to the renovated Tokyo Station and Tokyo Station Hotel. The resin statue is part of the "Bench Art in Marunouchi" event which celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Marunouchi Building close by.
The event ran from September 6-October 14 and borrowed the idea from a similar project in Bond Street in London. Some of the 20 notables on display included Ieyasu Tokugawa, Albert Einstein, sumo wrestler Hakuho, Masked Rider 1, architects Kingo Tatsuno (of Tokyo Station fame) and Englishman Josiah Conder, Sakamoto Ryoma, TV personality Tokoro George, golfer Ryo Ishikawa, baseball slugger Hideki Matsui and table tennis star Ai Fukuhara
Shohei Baba (1938-1999) was instrumental in the creation of All Japan Pro Wrestling and the increased popularity of the sport in Japan from the 1970s on. Over 2m tall, "Giant Baba" was the first Japanese wrestler to win the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in 1974.
Guide Books on Tokyo & Japan