Beyond architecture: Celebrating Zaha Hadid, the artist

Updated 6th July 2016
Beyond architecture: Celebrating Zaha Hadid, the artist
Written by Alyn Griffiths, CNN
News of Zaha Hadid's untimely death earlier this year shook the architecture community to its foundations.
At the Masterpiece collectors' fair in London, Hadid's friend and collaborator Francis Sultana of David Gill Gallery has curated a special commemorative salon that offers an insight into the Baghdad-born architect's extraordinary life and career.
"The fair and myself felt it would be lovely to do something in her memory this year as Zaha was taken from us very unexpectedly," says Sultana.
"I wanted to make sure this year that she's not going to be forgotten, that we're going to start to think about all the work she did and the woman behind that work."
The exhibition presents a selection of objects designed by Hadid over a career that saw her create some of the world's most distinctive buildings and earned her architecture's highest honor, the Pritzker Prize, in 2004.
"London 2066" by Zaha Hadid Architects, for British Vogue, 1991.
"London 2066" by Zaha Hadid Architects, for British Vogue, 1991. Credit: Zaha Hadid Architects
Having come to London in 1972 to study at the Architectural Association, Hadid founded her own studio in 1980 and began pioneering a form of parametric design which utilized computer software to enable the creation of buildings and objects with an unprecedented plasticity.
Examples such as her Aquatic Center for the London 2012 Olympics and the Guangzhou Opera House in China encapsulate her ability to challenge conventions and find ways to realize incredibly complex forms.
The exhibition at Masterpiece includes paintings, prototypes and finished products loaned by her studio, which provide evidence of Hadid's singular approach to every project she worked on.
Also included are press clippings and artifacts giving a sense of her formidable personality, but also of the journey she undertook as a woman setting out to make a difference in a male-dominated profession.
"There is a very beautiful, very large archive that will be shown, slowly and gradually," Sultana adds, "and we'll see a really beautiful story of someone's life and career and what she's left behind for us all to enjoy in the future."
"Masterpiece London 2016", sponsored by Royal Bank of Canada, takes place from 30 June -- 6 July at Royal Hospital Chelsea, London.