Published: Sat, May 18, 2019

Renowned architect IM Pei dies at age 102

Renowned architect IM Pei dies at age 102

I.M Pei - who said "architecture has to endure" - designed notable works such as the the Louvre's glass pyramid. He said there's no such thing as modern, post-modern, or deconstructivist architecture.

From the Macau Science Center to the Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Pei continued building through 2009.

The Landau Building (a.k.a. "Building 66") is another structure Pei designed on his alma mater's campus.

"I understand that times have changed, we have evolved".

Pei was born on April 26, 1917, in Guangzhou, China, as Ieoh Ming Pei.

French President Francois Mitterand (right) shakes hands with architect I.M. Pei, as Louvre Museum director Michel Laclotte looks on during the public opening of the Louvre Pyramid in March 1989.

Pei sparked deep controversy with his modernist work on the Louvre pyramid, which was once seen by locals as sacrilege because it was at odds with the classic French Renaissance style of the palace.

Pei also designed the West Wing addition to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

"All through the centuries, the Louvre has undergone violent change", Pei said.

"There are many other elements that come into play to create a form", said Pei.

The slim, elegant John Hancock Tower in downtown Boston shed dozens of its 11-foot-tall plates of reflective glass during construction, spurring litigation that might well have destroyed the firm.

During his life, he collected at least half of the American awards for architecture, including the Pritzker Prize, which is called the Nobel Prize of architecture.

While the Fragrant Hill, or "Xiangshan", hotel is widely considered one of Pei's less successful works, he adapted the same concepts to the much-loved Suzhou Museum, situated in his family's southeastern ancestral home.

Pei became best known for his modern building designs emphasising natural light, plain surfaces, and sharp angles, such as his landmark East Building at Washington's National Gallery of Art.

The museum in Qatar that opened in 2008 was inspired by Islamic architectural history, especially the 9th century mosque of Ahmed ibn Tulun in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.

Suzhou Museum in Suzhou City, Jiangsu Province, east China. He later said, "I did not know what architecture really was in China".

Pei dedicated energetic efforts to supporting the arts and education, serving on visiting committees at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Harvard and MIT as well as a range of United States government panels including the National Council on the Humanities and National Council on the Arts. "McCutcheon had been impressed with Pei's Place Ville Marie in Montreal, Canada (1955-66), which had consolidated a number of sites and provided a mixed-use concept for the entire development", wrote Philip Goad in Bates Smart: 150 Years of Australian Architecture.

Problems with the elaborate network of rods and spherical nodes that roof the Jacob Javits Convention Center in NY for a time brought waves of angry publicity as construction ground to a halt.

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