- HADID, Zaha
- (1950- )One of the few female architects to receive international acclaim, Zaha Hadid is the only woman to receive the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize (in 2004). Her architectural style is often consistent with the international movement called Deconstructivism, introduced in the 1980s with the intention of breaking down preconceived notions of architecture and provoking questions about what people hold to be aesthetically "true" in architectural design. Hadid, one of the leaders of this movement, was born in Baghdad and studied in London, where she opened her architectural practice in 1979. Her Vitra Fire Station, built in Weil-am-Rhein in Germany in 1989-1993, exemplifies this style, with its sharply angled walls that jut out of the framework of the building and provide an uneasy dynamism meant to suggest the function of the building as a fire station. The concrete exterior is a smooth, gray tone that blends into the sky. In 2006, the Guggenheim Museum of Art in New York City hosted a retrospective of Hadid's work, providing a venue for the rare entrance of a female architect into the "canon" of architecture.
Historical Dictionaries of Literature and the Arts. Allison Lee Palmer. 2008.