In this blog, the team here at JDW Architects would like to pay tribute to the work of one of the most prolific architects of our times – I M Pei.
Pei’s designs are renowned for their emphasis on precision geometry, plain surfaces and natural light. His style can be best described as modernist with cubist themes and is influenced by his love of Islamic architecture. Pei’s favoured building materials were glass and steel, with a combination of concrete.
The architect won a variety of awards and prizes for his buildings, including the prestigious Pritzker Prize, AIA Gold Medal, the Praemium Imperiale for Architecture.
Here are what we believe to be 5 of his most iconic projects, from a career that spanned over seven decades.
1. Le Grand Louvre, Paris, France, 1989
His most iconic and famous structure, the glass pyramid at the Louvre Museum in Paris, sparked controversy back in 1989 but it’s now one of Paris’ most famous landmarks.
2. Bank of China Tower, Hong Kong, China, 1990
This 367.5-metre skyscraper is arguably the most striking on the Hong Kong skyline.
3. Museum of Islamic Art, Doha, Qatar, 2008
Pei used rigorous geometries to create traditional Islamic patterns inside the museum. Located on an artificial island in the Arabian Gulf, the building is constructed from light limestone blocks that softly reflect the desert sun.
4. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Cleveland, USA, 1995
Geometric shapes make up the majority of this composition of the building, with heavy reliance on the structural abilities of steel and glass to keep the building from toppling.
5. Luce Memorial Chapel, Taichung, Taiwan, 1963
This Christian chapel sits on the campus of Tunghai University. Inside, the walls are covered in a lattice of crisscrossing concrete, chosen over wood to better combat humidity and seismic activity.
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