Zaha Hadid, founder of Zaha Hadid Architects, was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize (considered to be the Nobel Prize of architecture) in 2004 and is internationally known for her built, theoretical and academic work. Each of her dynamic and innovative projects builds on over thirty years of revolutionary exploration and research in the interrelated fields of urbanism, architecture and design.
Hadid was born in Baghdad, Iraq in 1950. She studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut before moving to London in 1972 to attend the Architectural Association (AA) School where she was awarded the Diploma Prize in 1977. She founded Zaha Hadid Architects in 1979 and completed her first building, the Vitra Fire Station, Germany in 1993.
Hadid taught at the AA School until 1987 and has since held numerous chairs and guest professorships at universities around the world. She is currently a professor at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and visiting professor of Architectural Design at Yale University.
Working with senior office partner, Patrik Schumacher, Hadid’s interest lies in the rigorous interface between architecture, landscape, and geology as her practice integrates natural topography and human-made systems, leading to experimentation with cutting-edge technologies. Such a process often results in unexpected and dynamic architectural forms.
The MAXXI: National Museum of 21st Century Arts in Rome, Italy and the London Aquatics Centre for the 2012 Olympic Games are excellent demonstrations of Hadid’s quest for complex, fluid space. Previous seminal buildings such as the Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art in Cincinnati and the Guangzhou Opera House in China have also been hailed as architecture that transforms our ideas of the future with new spatial concepts and bold, visionary forms.
Zaha Hadid Architects continues to be a global leader in pioneering research and design investigation. Collaborations with corporations that lead their industries have advanced the practice’s diversity and knowledge, whilst the implementation of state-of-the-art technologies have aided the realization of fluid, dynamic and therefore complex architectural structures.
Currently Hadid is working on a multitude of projects worldwide including: High-Speed Train Stations in Naples and Durango; the Fiera di Milano masterplan and tower as well as major master-planning projects in Beijing, Bilbao, Istanbul and Singapore. In the Middle East, Hadid’s portfolio includes cultural, corporate, academic and infrastructure projects in Jordan, Morocco, UAE and Saudi Arabia, in addition to national institutions such as the new Central Bank of Iraq Headquarters.
Zaha Hadid’s work of the past 30 years was the subject of critically-acclaimed exhibitions at New York’s Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in 2006, London’s Design Museum in 2007, the Palazzo della Ragione, Padua, Italy in 2009 and the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2011. Her recently completed projects include The Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum in Michigan (2012), Galaxy SOHO in Beijing (2012), Pierresvives Library and Archive in Montpellier (2012), CMA CGM Head Office Tower in Marseille (2011), London Aquatics Centre (2011), Riverside Museum in Glasgow (2011), Guangzhou Opera House (2010), Sheikh Zayed Bridge in Abu Dhabi (2010), MAXXI Museum in Rome (2020), Burnham Pavilion in Chicago (2009), Mobile Art for Chanel in Hong Kong, Tokyo, New York and Paris (2008) and the Nordpark Railway Stations in Innsbruck (2008).
Hadid’s outstanding contribution to the architectural profession continues to be acknowledged by the most world’s most respected institutions including the Forbes List of the World’s Most Powerful Women and the Japan Art Association presenting her with the prestigious ‘Praemium Imperiale’. In 2010 and 2011, her designs were awarded the Stirling Prize, one of architecture’s highest accolades, by the Royal Institute of British Architects. Other recent awards include UNESCO naming Hadid as an ‘Artist for Peace’, the Republic of France honouring Hadid with the ‘Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres’, TIME magazine included her in their list of the ‘100 Most Influential People in the World’ and in 2012, Zaha Hadid was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.