Zaha Hadid is an idol that has broken the architectural stereotypes
She chose a profession which was not popular among Muslim women, as architecture was considered a profession for men only. She proved that she could succeed in becoming a cult architect, although she admitted that society did not accept a foreign woman as an architect, especially if this woman still did something non-standard.
Zaha Hadid became an idol for young architects. Her style, which was not perceived by contemporaries a few decades ago, was extravagant and non-promising became classical for new generations.
She is called an architect from another dimension, “the queen of shape”, “the queen of postmodernism and deconstructivism,” “prima donna in architecture,” “a planet on its own unique orbit”, “the legend of her time”, and her works are found to be cosmic, representing a special creative style.
When being an eleven-year-old girl, she dreamed about becoming the one who invents houses, without knowing how this profession is called.
Her architectural career was as unordinary and special as her projects. She received a Maths degree at the American University of Beirut and planned to continue her studies in Switzerland. But she chose architecture, moved to London and studied at the School of Architecture under the auspices of the Association of Architecture. There he met his first creative mentor, the Dutch architect-innovator Rem Koolhaas, who invited her to work in his Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA).
At the age of thirty, she founded the architectural company Zaha Hadid Architect, which was originally an architectural studio. Fame and recognition came later: after ten years of losing dozens of tenders, because her projects looked for investors to be too futuristic, innovative, and therefore risky.
The first implemented project was the Vitra Fire Station furniture factory in Germany. It was the first time when the world recognized her talent: the building was like a miniature lightning in the form of a Stellar bomber, where the motion of fire vehicles was recorded as choreographic charts.
Her phenomenon lies in the non-standard, abstract vision of architecture. She produced extravagant images of the building forms which nobody took seriously at first. She developed absolutely unique forms: winding, deformed, broken geometry, “unstable” – as if they had no support underneath and, therefore, would fall. They often have no delimitation between the top and bottom, but there are only dynamic flows. Her works are unusual, futuristic, and at the same time emotional.
Zaha perceived architecture not only as a building, but as an art whose task is to cause emotions and make think. Patrick Schumacher, general director of «Zaha Hadid Architect», said that this was a woman with great interest in life and all the strange.
Heydar Aliyev Center in Azerbaijan
For this project in 2014, Zaha Hadid received the Design of the Year Award from the London Design Museum. In the centre are a museum, concert hall, exhibition halls, meeting rooms, auditoriums and a restaurant. The building is changing under different angles and turns. The architect said that the concept of the project reflected the silence of the spatial flow, as well in expressed the mentality of the Azerbaijanis.
Another feature of the architectural style of Zaha Hadid is the harmonious combination of natural landscape and futuristic, constructivist structures.
The surrealistic hotel in China, planned as a “city window” that connects the resort town of Dreams and the city of Macao. The façade of the building of two bridged towers , forming cavities, is enclosed with a mesh exoskeleton. On the roof of the sky is a gigantic pool.
Zaha Hadid noticed that it was interesting for her to convey the emotions which a human in the wild would feet, where there is no particular route, and a human explores the unknown territory and enjoys new landscapes.
Galaxy Soho Complex, Beijing, China
Smoothly interconnected panoramic dome structures. Round staircase landings create the impression of constant movement. This design is not accidental: Zaha Hadid took into account the diversity of Beijing architecture, and therefore created the very construction. As she said, that was “an interpretation inspired by nature”.
Zaha Hadid set a goal to inspire people with architecture. She acknowledged that the most difficult thing in the work of the architect is to explain to people that buildings can be not only rectangular.
Polytechnic University in Hong Kong
Designed in the form of a ship, it symbolizes the dynamics of the developing megapolis and the high level of the educational innovation institution. The so-called “seamlessness” adds the visual dynamics of the movement to its building.
In 2004, she became the first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize for the project of the London Aquatics Sports Centre. This is the most prestigious award in architecture, equivalent to the Nobel Prize. She was awarded the Stirling Prize twice.
In 2016, she was the first woman to be awarded the Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
The London Aquatics Sports Centre
The Centre was constructed for the 2012 Olympic Games. The main architectural concept of the Zaha Hadid Centre is associated with the movement of water: a wave-like roof that rises from the ground like a wave and adds the plasticity of movement to the building, and at the same time, it connects the Centre and the Stradforth Bridge. Pools in the Centre contain about 10 million litres of water, and depending on the type of competition, they have the ability to change depth and width.
Zaha Hadid was died in 2016 from heart attack triggered by an acute bronchitis. She was 65. Her architectural bureau continues to work under the direction of Patrick Schumacher in the founder’s style.
In 2022, the first project of the «Zaha Hadid Architects» will be launched in Ukraine. It will build three subway stations (entrances, cash offices and platforms) in the city of Dnipro.