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Zaha Hadid, Queen of Curves and inventor of 89 Degrees.

Reflections of Zaha Hadid
Reflections of Zaha Hadid, The Opus, Dubai.   Leica monochrome photography by Tom Clarke.

Zaha Hadid

One of the most creative minds in history with a spectacular vision. Known as the Queen of curves and the inventory of 89 degrees.

Tempestuous personality

A tempestuous personality, dressed in flashy outfits and always accompanied by a cape. Hadid was a Baghdad-born, London-based architect. Before moving to London in 1972 as a 22 year old young woman to study at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, she attended the American University of Beirut where she studied mathematics. By 2012, she was made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth II, in recognition of her services to architecture.

Most outstanding pupil

A former professor, Koolhaas, described her at graduation as “a planet in her own orbit”. Another of her processors, Zenghelis, described her as the most outstanding pupil he ever taught. ‘We called her the inventor of the 89 degrees. Nothing was ever at 90 degrees. She had spectacular vision”.

Queen of the curve

Described by The Guardian of London as the “Queen of the curve”, who “liberated architectural geometry, giving it a whole new expressive identity”. In architecture, Hadid’s walls were rarely straight vertical lines. Rather, they were flowing boundaries that took on forms similar to calligraphy – an aesthetic that only Hadid possessed. 

Zaha, while being treated for bronchitis in a Miami hospital in March 2016, died of a heart attack. She was 65 years old.



Zaha Hadid Architects: Redefining Architecture and Design (The Images Publishing Group, July 2017)

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