Dame Zaha Hadid buildings elevated uncertainty to an art

April 1, 2016  |   Feature,   World
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Internationally acclaimed architect, Dame Zaha Hadid was the first woman to receive the Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) Gold Medal in recognition of her work. Her designs have been commissioned around the world, including Hong Kong, Germany and Azerbaijan.

Zaha Hadid died yesterday following a heart attack in a Miami hospital, where she was being treated for bronchitis. She was 65.

Zaha Hadid was a pioneer in the field of architecture, becoming the first woman to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize (the Nobel Prize of her field) in 2004.
Zaha Hadid was a pioneer in the field of architecture, becoming the first woman to win the Pritzker Architecture Prize (the Nobel Prize of her field) in 2004.

Author and architecture critic for The New York Times Michael Kimmelman reported that her “soaring structures left a mark on skylines and imaginations around the world and in the process reshaped architecture for the modern age.”

The Vitra Fire Station is located in Weil am Rhein, Germany. It is the very first building complex designed by Zaha Hadid in 1990-93. Hadid Architects website explained that it was "conceived as the end­note to existing factory buildings, the Vitra Fire Station defines rather than occupies space – emerging as a linear, layered series of walls, between which program elements are contained — a representation of ‘movement frozen’ – an ‘alert’ structure, ready to explode into action at any moment."
The Vitra Fire Station is located in Weil am Rhein, Germany. It is the very first building complex designed by Zaha Hadid in 1990-93.
Hadid Architects website explained that it was “conceived as the end­note to existing factory buildings, the Vitra Fire Station defines rather than occupies space – emerging as a linear, layered series of walls, between which program elements are contained — a representation of ‘movement frozen’ – an ‘alert’ structure, ready to explode into action at any moment.”

 

Guangzhou Opera House's fluid forms — which have been compared to a cluster of rocks in a riverbed, their surfaces eroded by the water’s currents — give sudden focus to the energy around it so that you see the whole area with fresh eyes. The opera house is located in Guangdong province, People's Republic of China.
Guangzhou Opera House’s fluid forms — which have been compared to a cluster of rocks in a riverbed, their surfaces eroded by the water’s currents — give sudden focus to the energy around it so that you see the whole area with fresh eyes. The opera house is located in Guangdong province, People’s Republic of China.

 

London Aquatics Center was designed in 2011. Hadid drew inspiration from “the fluid geometry of water in motion.” Double-curvature geometry has been used to generate a parabolic arch structure that creates the unique characteristics of the roof. The center has been embraced by locals as part of the sprawling Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, near Westfield Stratford City, UK.
London Aquatics Center was designed in 2011. Hadid drew inspiration from “the fluid geometry of water in motion.” Double-curvature geometry has been used to generate a parabolic arch structure that creates the unique characteristics of the roof. The center has been embraced by locals as part of the sprawling Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, near Westfield Stratford City, UK.

 

Michael Kimmelman when on to say in an article that appeared today [April 1, 2016] in The New York Times that “[Zaha Hadid] was not just a rock star and a designer of spectacles. She also liberated architectural geometry, giving it a whole new expressive identity. Geometry became, in her hands, a vehicle for unprecedented and eye- popping new spaces but also for emotional ambiguity. Her buildings elevated uncertainty to an art, conveyed in the odd ways one entered and moved through those buildings and in the questions her structures raised about how they were supported.”

The Heydar Aliyev Center is a 619,000-square-foot building complex in Baku, Azerbaijan designed by Zaha Hadid and noted for her distinctive flowing, curved style that eschews sharp angles.
The Heydar Aliyev Center is a 619,000-square-foot building complex in Baku, Azerbaijan designed by Zaha Hadid and noted for her distinctive flowing, curved style that eschews sharp angles.

Dame Zaha Hadid’s legacy will prove what can be done; that you can be a Baghdad-born British citizen who can cut through all the red tape, all the machismo, all the macho behavior and become an internationally-respected architect who creates buildings which will stand the test of time.

 

The Messner Mountain Museum is in Corones, Italy. The museum is arranged over several levels to reduce its footprint. A series of staircases, like waterfalls in a mountain stream, cascade within the museum to connect the exhibition spaces and describe the circulation over three levels. The wide windows allow natural light to penetrate deep within the museum, drawing visitors forward throughout the interior to emerge at the viewing terrace which cantilevers 6 meters from the mountain wall over the valley below. In this view, the entrance appears to erupt from the rock and will be overgrown with greenery.
The Messner Mountain Museum is in Corones, Italy. The museum is arranged over several levels to reduce its footprint. A series of staircases, like waterfalls in a mountain stream, cascade within the museum to connect the exhibition spaces and describe the circulation over three levels. The wide windows allow natural light to penetrate deep within the museum, drawing visitors forward throughout the interior to emerge at the viewing terrace which cantilevers 6 meters from the mountain wall over the valley below. In this view, the entrance appears to erupt from the rock and will be overgrown with greenery.


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