Hadid's buildings are distinctively neofuturistic, characterised by curving forms with "multiple perspective points and fragmented geometry to evoke the chaos of modern life".
On 31 March 2016, Hadid died of a heart attack in a Miami hospital, where she was being treated for bronchitis.
Since her student days in London at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid (born 1950) has been intensely preoccupied with changing our general notions of space - not only in a physical sense, but also socially and culturally. Hadid's projects are characterized by their dynamic formal qualities of sinuously, curving shapes, or crystallized strata. This sums up as a kind of new Baroque, a sensuous, more vibrant and engaging type of architecture.
Hadid's projects during the late 1970s and 1980s were marked by a profound understanding of early 20th Century avant-garde artists and architects. In an attempt to redevelop and make relevant again the formal investigations of Russian Constructivism and Italian Futurism, her projects expressed utopian ideals.
Today, Zaha Hadid Architects create landmarks projects for all types of functional programs. Their buildings are never bland or mundane, but moreover assertive statements of a particular view, that the world may indeed look different. Their efforts have resulted in a staggering almost one thousand projects throughout the globe, in every scale, from urban design schemes to objects and furniture design.
Along with her strong conceptual and historical awareness, nature's forms and shapes appear as a recurrent source of inspiration for Zaha Hadid's architecture. It includes attention to physical contexts and landscapes, whether resulting in layered structures or powerful moving lines but also exploring possible interfaces between patterns and construction.
Zaha Hadid Architects embraced digital drawing early on. This has made the studio able to challenge traditional ways of making architecture. In collaboration with senior office partner Patrik Schumacher, Zaha Hadid has meticulously explored the possibilities of parametric design, allowing for the conception and construction of architecture as seamless flows of energy and matter. Zaha Hadid is the 2004 Pritzker Prize laureate and winner of the Stirling Prize in 2010 and 2011.
Dame Zaha Hadid, the world-renowned architect, whose designs include the London Olympic aquatic centre, has died aged 65. The British designer, who was born in Iraq, had a heart attack on Thursday while in hospital in Miami, where she was being treated for bronchitis.
Hadid’s buildings have been commissioned around the world and she was the first woman to receive the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) gold medal.
Zaha Hadid's 10 best buildings in pictures
Read moreA lengthy statement released by her company said: “It is with great sadness that Zaha Hadid Architects have confirmed that Dame Zaha Hadid DBE died suddenly in Miami in the early hours of this morning.
“She had contracted bronchitis earlier this week and suffered a sudden heart attack while being treated in hospital. Zaha Hadid was widely regarded to be the greatest female architect in the world today.”
Speaking from Mexico, Richard Rogers, whose buildings include the Pompidou Centre and the Millennium Dome, told the Guardian that the news of Hadid’s death was “really, really terrible”.
“She was a great architect, a wonderful woman and wonderful person,” Lord Rogers said. “Among architects emerging in the last few decades, no one had any more impact than she did. She fought her way through as a woman. She was the first woman to win the Pritzker prize.
“I got involved with her first in Cardiff when the government threw her off the project in the most disgraceful way. She has had to fight every inch of the way. It is a great loss.”
Jane Duncan, RIBA’s president, said: “Dame Zaha Hadid was an inspirational woman, and the kind of architect one can only dream of being. Visionary and highly experimental, her legacy, despite her young age, is formidable.
“She leaves behind a body of work from buildings to furniture, footwear and cars, that delight and astound people all around the world. The world of architecture has lost a star today.”
The architect Daniel Libeskind said he was devastated by her death. “Her spirit will live on in her work and studio. Our hearts go out,” he said.
Zaha Hadid: queen of the curve
Read moreStirling prize winner Amanda Levete said: “She was an inspiration. Her global impact was profound and her legacy will be felt for many years to come because she shifted the culture of architecture and the way that we experience buildings. When my son was very young, Zaha showed him how to write his name in Arabic. It was the moment I realised the genesis of her remarkable architectural language.
“She was an extraordinary role model for women. She was fearless and a trailblazer – her work was brave and radical. Despite sometimes feeling misunderstood, she was widely celebrated and rightly so.”
Architect Graham Morrison said: “She was so distinct that there isn’t anybody like her. She didn’t fit in and I don’t mean that meanly. She was in a world of her own and she was extraordinary.”
The British culture minister, Ed Vaizey, posted on Twitter, saying he was stunned at the news and praising her “huge contribution to contemporary architecture”.
The London aquatics centre built for the 2012 Olympic Games. Photograph: John Walton/PAThe London mayor, Boris Johnson, tweeted: “So sad to hear of death of Zaha Hadid, she was an inspiration and her legacy lives on in wonderful buildings in Stratford and around the world.”
AdvertisementHadid, born in Baghdad in 1950, became a revolutionary force in British architecture even though she struggled to win commissions in the UK for many years. The Iraqi government described her death as “an irreplaceable loss to Iraq and the global community”.
She studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut before launching her architectural career in London at the Architectural Association.
By 1979, she had established her own practice in London – Zaha Hadid Architects – and gained a reputation across the world for groundbreaking theoretical works including the Peak in Hong Kong (1983), Kurfürstendamm 70 in Berlin (1986) and the Cardiff Bay opera house in Wales (1994).
The first major build commission that earned her international recognition was the Vitra fire station in Weil Am Rhein, Germany (1993), but her scheme to build the Cardiff opera house was scrapped in the 1990s and she did not produce a major building in the UK until the Riverside museum of transport in Glasgow was completed in 2011.
Other notable projects included the Maxxi: Italian National Museum of 21st Century Arts in Rome (2009), the London aquatics centre for the 2012 Olympic Games (2011), the Heydar Aliyev centre in Baku (2013) and a stadium for the 2022 football World Cup in Qatar.
One of Hadid’s notable projects, the Heydar Aliyev cultural centre in Baku, Azerbaijan. Photograph: View Pictures/RexBuildings such as the Rosenthal Centre of Contemporary Art in Cincinnati (2003) and the Guangzhou opera house in China (2010) were also hailed as architecture that transformed ideas of the future. Other designs include the Serpentine Sackler Gallery in Kensington Gardens, west London, and the BMW factory in Leipzig, one of her first designs to be built.
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Read moreShe became the first female recipient of the Pritzker architecture prize in 2004 and twice won the UK’s most prestigious architecture award, the RIBA Stirling prize. Other awards included the Republic of France’s Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and Japan’s Praemium Imperiale.
Hadid won acclaim in Scotland for designing the popular Riverside Museum in Glasgow, known for its distinctive roof structure. Muriel Gray, chair of the board of governors at the Glasgow School of Art, tweeted a picture of the Riverside museum with the message: “Horrible shocking news that Zaha Hadid, incredible architectural trailblazer has just died. Huge loss to design.”
Hadid was recently awarded the RIBA’s 2016 royal gold medal, the first woman to be awarded the honour in her own right.
Architect Sir Peter Cook wrote in his citation at the time: “In our current culture of ticking every box, surely Zaha Hadid succeeds, since, to quote the royal gold medal criteria, she is someone who ‘has made a significant contribution to the theory or practice of architecture … for a substantial body of work rather than for work which is currently fashionable’.
“For three decades now she has ventured where few would dare … Such self confidence is easily accepted in film-makers and football managers, but causes some architects to feel uncomfortable. Maybe they’re secretly jealous of her unquestionable talent. Let’s face it, we might have awarded the medal to a worthy comfortable character. We didn’t. We awarded it to Zaha: larger than life, bold as brass and certainly on the case.”
A computer-generated image of the stadium to be built in al-Wakrah for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Photograph: AFP/Getty ImagesSpeaking in February on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs, Hadid said: “I don’t really feel I’m part of the establishment. I’m not outside, I’m on the kind of edge, I’m dangling there. I quite like it … I’m not against the establishment per se. I just do what I do and that’s it.”
AdvertisementLevete, who co-designed the spaceship-like media centre at Lord’s cricket ground, described her as “a true and loyal friend … a confidante and someone I could turn to for advice”.
She said: “She was an absolute inspiration to many and her global impact was really profound.”
Kelly Hoppen, the interior designer who appeared in BBC2’s show Dragons’ Den, tweeted: “Deeply saddened by the news of Zaha Hadid’s death. She was an iconic architect who pushed the boundaries to another level xx ZahaHadid”
Angela Brady, a former president of RIBA, described Hadid as “one of our greatest architects of our time”.
She added: “She was a tough architect, which is needed as a woman at the top of her profession and at the height of her career. She will be sadly missed as an iconic leader in architecture and as a role model for women in architecture.”
A spokeswoman for BMW said: “She was an icon in the world of architecture, groundbreaking in her way to create with a very distinctive style. On the 10th anniversary of our Leipzig plant’s central building which she was the architect for , Zaha said that she felt it gave testament to the plant’s vision. We are glad she felt this way, too.”
Author Kathy Lette tweeted Hadid’s “beautiful, undulating feminine designs proved that u didn’t need a phallic edifice complex 2 be a brilliant architect”.
Tamara Rojo, English National Ballet director and dancer, tweeted: “Devastated by the passing of the great Zaha Hadid” with a picture of “her stunning Opera House in Guangzhou where we performed last year”.