A list no one likes read, but here’s a collection of notable figures who we lost from the design world this year. (See the rest of our Year in Review 2016 articles here.)
The tragic passing of Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid sent shockwaves through the architectural community and beyond. The Architect’s Newspaper (AN) helped break the news of her death and shortly followed-up with an obituary and tribute from architect Sir Peter Cook.
The creator of one of the most ubiquitous Italian industrial designs of the 20th century, Renato Bialetti was fittingly interred in one of his designs—the octagonal Moka coffee maker.
Australian architect Dr. Peter Corrigan, AM, the dean of a vigorous and difficult brand of Australian architecture passed away on December 1, 2016. Corrigan leaves behind a grand legacy: of many buildings and countless awards received; of numerous protégés and perhaps some enemies; of wild ideas shared selflessly with many students in Melbourne and elsewhere; of an architectural voice in the wilderness built of dreams and hopes set against the small-mindedness of the local political leadership and the usual numbing logics of the construction market.
Hong Kong-born Canadian architect Bing Thom won the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Gold Medal in 2016, the same year as his passing. He was described as “full of passion, thoughtfulness, intelligence, generosity of spirit, and belief in the power of architecture to transform.”
“Master of the oblique,” French architect Claude Parent died on February 27, a day after his 93rd birthday. He was one of the most influential modernist architects to come out of France and founder of the oblique function. His style is widely acknowledged for paving the way for architects such as Daniel Libeskind, Frank Gehry, and the late Zaha Hadid.
Thomas S. Marvel
Thomas S. Marvel, FAIA, was born in Newburgh, New York, on March 15, 1935 and passed away on November 3, 2015 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He designed numerous residences, including a very innovative house for his own family in a dense urban neighborhood that was published in Phaidon’s edition of 20th-Century World Architecture.
Born in Brooklyn in 1924, Jack Masey worked out of Manhattan for most of his life. A trained architect who also studied graphic design at Yale, Masey worked with R. Buckminster Fuller and Charles and Ray Eames at numerous exhibitions where he incorporated art by the likes of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning.
Ali Tayar is remembered for his love of modern design which he applied to a range of projects including everything from furniture to hardware to restaurants Pop Burger and Pizza Bar in New York City. He grew up in Istanbul and studied architecture at the University of Stuttgart and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Later, Tayar founded the Parallel Design Partnership in 1993.
Born August 29, 1927 in Worms, Germany, Vladimir Kagan fled Nazi Germany to France and then settled in New York. While he studied architecture at Columbia University, he never graduated and instead worked with his father at a cabinetry shop before selling his own furniture. Kagan and his furniture flourished; he sold works to films stars such as Marilyn Monroe and Gary Cooper. At the age of 88, he passed away on April 7, 2016, in Palm Beach, Florida
Born in 1932, landscape architect Diana Balmori was a leader in the landscape profession, particularly of designing spaces that interface with architecture. Balmori’s firm Balmori Associates is headquartered in New York but she worked in countries all over the globe, such as with her New Government City in South Korea—a zero waste community designed in 2014.