We lost Zaha Hadid: Thursday March 24 2016 she was 65. You can read more here.
She considered herself one who “pushes boundaries” yet as one who still respects traditional architecture, I think the pushing of too many boundaries is one of our biggest problems as architects today. Without boundaries you have little order, architecture is actually all about principles of ordering things. As my friend Richard Doria stated once “we all use the same pile of materials it’s how we put them together that define us”.
Frank Lloyd Wright spent 50 years breaking the box and now we are back to building better boxes again. Yet the profession is still trying to push some very odd boundaries with the better boxes now being built.
Wright pushed the right boundaries; Zaha was like Wright, the classic artist in architecture; one who pursues self expression, public recognition or other ego driven aspirations.
A recent “Ode to Zaha” stated”:
“Zaha was sometimes called the most talented female architect alive, and by some even the most talented woman architect of all time. But that boxed appreciation ghettoizes and diminishes her, and women, too: she was quite simply one of the most inventive architects ever. She created her own language, and everything she touched turned to intelligent beauty.”
She unlike Wright was not an artisan architect also. She was not about craft; but Idea, engineering and image. In a modernist era that brought; influence. She hit some high bars of attainment, like Wright yet in her own unique style and way.
She like Wright was a definer of her time. In my mind she was perhaps the most prominent female architect, next to Julia Mogan. Morgan was perhaps more significant because of her sensitivity to humanity. Zaha was perhaps more influential. Wright might of called Hadid “One of the glass box boy’s”, but actually she was a girl and most of her glass was curvy, and curves are an accomplishment in the profession. Curves are “organic” and Wright would have liked that. She did very well for her self and for the profession.
May she rest in peace her building days are done but her influence goes on!