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Most Famous Architects of All Time

Architects are artists who shape our world. We brought together the most famous architects of all time.

Monday, November 4, 2019
 updated by Taner Korkmaz
Most Famous Architects of All Time

Most Famous Architects of All Time

Architects are like sculptors who first draw their dreams on paper and then create real ones. First, they transfer the project they created in their mind to paper, and then they manage the growth of their own works on the construction site. Architects who can combine aesthetics and functionality in their works have determined our lifestyle throughout history.

Only the architects who have the vision to change the routine and create their own lines become famous and fascinate us with their works. This is the main reason why almost every renowned architect of all time has unique styles. Although some of them are representative of the same architectural movement, it can easily be seen that each of them has their own signature on their projects. However, it is tough to gain recognition and respect in a world where an architect can be different only by making a difference. Perhaps many of them may owe their reputation to one project, but those who have failed to maintain this success have been forgotten over the years.

These architects who proved their success with great designs have many projects that can be described as world heritage. However, the most disadvantageous aspect of architecture is that they cannot be collected and exhibited in a museum. Therefore, if you want to see the works of the most famous architects of all time, a long journey is waiting for you.

Among the most famous architects of all time, there are some architects who lived hundreds of years ago and designed buildings that are now the symbols of some cities. At the same time, there are many architects that lay the foundations of the current understanding of modern architecture.

Table of Contents
Most Famous Architects of All Time
Most Famous Architects of All Time
Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright
Born : June 8, 1867, Richland Center, WI, United States
Died : April 9, 1959, Emergency Room - St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ
Notable Works : Fallingwater, Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio, Taliesin, Taliesin West, Frederick C. Robie House
Frank Lloyd Wright is one of the most famous architects of all time with an understanding of designing structures that are compatible with humanity and the environment, which he called organic architecture. Frank Lloyd Wright is the pioneer of the Prairie School movement in architecture. Born as a child of teacher parents, Frank Lloyd Wright studied civil engineering at the University of Wisconsin, followed by an internship with renowned architects Joseph Lyman Silsbee and Louis Sullivan in Chicago. Frank Lloyd Wright, who opened his own practice in 1893, stepped into his legendary architectural career. In addition to his 70-year career in architecture, he is known for more than 20 books and articles. In addition to the houses he designed, he designed many schools, offices, churches, skyscrapers, and museums. Frank Lloyd Wright's projects are always treated as special works and inspire architects and architecture students.
Zaha Hadid
Zaha Hadid
Born : October 31, 1950, Baghdad, Iraq
Died : March 31, 2016, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Miami Beach, FL
Notable Works : Heydar Aliyev Center, MAXXI - National Museum of 21st Century Art, Port Authority, Dongdaemun Design Plaza, London Aquatics Centre
Zaha Hadid was one of the most famous architects of all time who has achieved many firsts. She distinguished herself from other architects and designers by using curved lines in her projects and left her mark with her architectural approach. The first woman to receive the Pritzker Architecture Award, Zaha Hadid was born to a wealthy family. Her father was an industrialist and politician, and her mother was an artist. Zaha Hadid discovered her interest in architecture during her childhood trips to ancient Sumerian cities. Zaha Hadid studied at the American University of Beirut. After moving to London, she studied at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, and after her graduation in 1977, she has worked for her former professors Koolhaas and Zenghelis in Rotterdam until opening her own architectural firm in 1980. London-based Zaha Hadid Architects has become one of the most successful architectural offices in the world thanks to Zaha Hadid's outstanding architectural approach. Zaha Hadid decorated her architectural career with many prizes she won. She received the Stirling Prize, the UK's most prestigious architecture award, twice in a row, and she became the first and only woman awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects with the Royal Gold Medal. In addition to her architectural career, she taught architecture at leading universities around the world such as Harvard and Cambridge and contributed to the development of a new generation of architects. Zaha Hadid is considered one of the most famous architects of all time with the buildings she designed and the unique perspective she brought to modern architecture.
Frank Gehry
Frank Gehry
Born : February 28, 1929, Toronto, Canada
Notable Works : Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Louis Vuitton Foundation, Gehry Residence, Dancing House
Frank Gehry is one of the most famous architects of all time. From his own home (Gehry Residence) to Walt Disney Concert Hall, his works are among the world's most renowned architectural structures. Frank Gehry, who was born as Frank Owen Goldberg, became interested in architecture while he was a child, and showed his creativity by designing small houses with the materials he obtained from his grandfather's hardware store. Frank Gehry, who says he inherited his creative genes from his mother, first studied at Los Angeles City College and then graduated from the University of Southern California's School of Architecture. He received his Bachelor of Architecture in 1954 from the University of Southern California. Frank Gehry moved to Cambridge with his family in 1956, and Frank Gehry studied city planning at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. After coming back to Los Angeles in 1957, he started working for Victor Gruen Associates and completed his first residential project. He then went to Paris for a year, and when he returned, he founded his own architectural firm in 1962. In 1989 Frank Gehry was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize. In many countries, Frank Gehry has created numerous spectacular projects, including the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, which is regarded as the masterpiece of the twentieth century. Frank Gehry is a source of inspiration for the new generation of architects with his unique modern style and is one of the pioneers of modern architecture.
Norman Foster
Norman Foster
Born : June 1, 1935, Reddish, Metropolitan Borough of Stockport, United Kingdom
Notable Works : 30 St Mary Axe (The Gherkin), Reichstag Building, Hearst Tower, City Hall, Millennium Bridge
Norman Foster is one of the first architects to come to mind when talking about high-tech architecture. Norman Foster, famous with bringing together steel and glass to design innovative modern buildings, was born the son of machine painter Robert Foster and local bakery worker Lilian Foster. Norman Foster did not have the opportunity to shape his natural talent for architecture by vocational training until he was almost 21 years old. Architect John E. Beardshaw liked Norman's sketches, and after that, in 1956, Norman Foster began the study at the University of Manchester, the School of Architecture and City Planning. Norman Foster, who worked part-time to pay for the school, received the RIBA silver medal in 1959 for his determination. After graduating in 1961, he received the Henry Fellowship for the Yale School of Architecture and made the most important step in his career, making him one of the most famous architects in the world. Norman Foster returned to England in 1963 and opened his first architectural practice, Team 4. Norman Foster, who founded architectural firms under different names for 36 years, renamed his company as Foster + Partners in 1999. Focusing on industrial buildings in the early years of his architectural career, Norman Foster built numerous office buildings that left his mark on world architecture in the following years. Norman Foster, one of the most famous architects of all time, has a career decorated with prestigious awards, including the Pritzker Architecture Prize. It is possible to see and distinguish the modern architectural approach of Norman Foster at the buildings he designed. The buildings, which are the symbols of many famous cities today, bear the signature of Norman Foster.
Tadao Ando
Tadao Ando
Born : September 13, 1941, Minato-ku, Osaka, Japan
Notable Works : Ibaraki Kasugaoka Church (Church of the Light), Row House in Sumiyoshi, Chichu Art Museum, Chapel on the water, 21 21 Design Sight
Tadao Ando, ​​despite having no formal training in the field of architecture, thanks to has an architectural perspective and talent, he is considered as one of the most famous architects of all time. Born and raised in Osaka, Tadao Ando focused on boxing in his youth and was planning to pursue a boxing career until he saw the Imperial Hotel designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in Tokyo. When he returned to Osaka, he ended his boxing career, graduated from high school, attended night classes and learned to draw. One of the most famous architects of all time, Tadao Ando is an autodidact architect focused on self-development. Tadao Ando created his own unique style with his inferences by examining the buildings designed by world-famous architects. In 1969, he founded his own design studio, Tadao Ando Architect & Associates, and began to reveal his designs one by one, reflecting the beauty of simplicity. The influences of Japanese and Zen culture are the hallmarks of Tadao Ando's buildings. Making impressive designs with clean lines, Tadao Ando designs concrete buildings and reflects the aesthetics of simplicity in this way. Before Tadao Ando, there was no architect who thought that using the concrete could create such a spacious environment. It is possible to see the buildings he designed in Japan, Germany, France, Italy, America, England, and many other countries. Tadao Ando, ​​who has decorated his architectural career with numerous awards, received the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1995. In addition to his career in architecture, Tadao Ando has also taught as a guest professor at some of the world's most renowned universities, such as Yale University, Harvard University, and Columbia University. Since 1998, Tadao Ando has been working as a professor at the University of Tokyo to train next generation architects.
Jean Nouvel
Jean Nouvel
Born : August 12, 1945, Fumel, France
Notable Works : Louvre Abu Dhabi, Agbar Tower, Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain, Paris Philharmonic, One Central Park
Jean Nouvel is an architect who is known for his modern architectural approach and his desire to share the beauty of his architecture with the broader audience. Despite his family's insistence on studying mathematics and language, he continued his own passion and, despite his difficulties, studied to become an architect at the École nationale deséureure des Beaux-Arts. Jean Nouvel started his professional career as an assistant architect with Claude Parent and Paul Virilio, and in 1970 he established his first partnership with François Seigneur. With its buildings designed with a modern architectural approach, Jean Nouvel has received many awards, including the world's most prestigious architecture awards such as the Wolf Prize in Arts and the Pritzker Prize. However, Jean Nouvel has also gained great respect for his initiatives and efforts to create common awareness in the industry. Jean Nouvel, the co-founder of The Syndicat de l'Architecture, the French labor union for architects, also founded the first Paris architecture biennale in 1980. In 1981, he won the design competition for the Institut du Monde Arabe, and upon completion of the building in 1987, he became a world-renowned architect. From 1972 to 1994, he co-founded different practices with Gilbert Lezenes, Jean-François Guyot, Pierre Soria, Emmanuel Blamont, Jean-Marc Ibos, Mirto Vitart and Emmanuel Gattani. Jean Nouvel founded Ateliers Jean Nouvel in 1994 with Michel Pélissié, one of the largest architectural firms in France, and has opened branches in Rome, Geneva, Madrid, and Barcelona in addition to the Paris office. Jean Nouvel, one of the few architects who have won the Pritzker Prize, has become one of the most famous architects with the buildings he designed and the initiatives he took.
Le Corbusier
Le Corbusier
Born : October 6, 1887, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland
Died : August 27, 1965, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France
Notable Works : Villa Savoye, Colline Notre Dame du Haut, Unité d'Habitation, Unité d'Habitation de Marseille, La Tourette
Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, known as Le Corbusier, was born in La Chaux-de-Fonds, famous for its watchmaking industry. The city, where craftsmen like his father, an enamel artist, lived, was influential in shaping the vision of the renowned architect and made him one of the successful architects who educated not on architecture but on art. Considered one of the pioneers of modern architecture, Le Corbusier attended the municipal art school and attended the higher course of decoration for three years. One of the most famous architects of all time, Le Corbusier developed himself by reading books on architecture and philosophy in libraries, visiting museums, and drawing house drawings. In 1905, while still a student, the talented Le Corbusier designed his first house, the Villa Fallet. In 1907, he went on his first journey, which gained a different architectural perspective, and went to Florence, Budapest, and Vienna. He worked as a draftsman for two years in the office of Auguste Perret, the architect of the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées. He then gained experience working with Peter Behrens. When he returned to La-Chaux-de-Fonds in 1912, he designed one of his first signature projects, Maison Blanche, which he created for his parents. Le Corbusier worked on the use of reinforced concrete as a building material, which he learned during Auguste Perre's office and focused on improving the usability of concrete in different fields with new theories. With the use of concrete, he pioneered the creation of free design independent of walls. Le Corbusier went to Paris in 1917 and established his own practice. Le Corbusier was an accomplished painter who was a follower of Cubism and Purism, as well as architecture. And even his name, Charles-Edouard Jeanneret, became Le Corbusier in his career as a painter. Le Corbusier, which looks at architecture from a wider perspective, has also developed itself in urban planning and has become one of the best. Plan Voisin, designed for Paris, has a vision far ahead of urban planning day. Throughout his career, Le Corbusier has drawn many different architectural projects besides buildings. At Villa Savoye, you can see the architectural genius of Le Corbusier, which made him one of the most famous architects of all time.
Rem Koolhaas
Rem Koolhaas
Born : November 17, 1944, Rotterdam, Netherlands
Notable Works : Casa da Música, CCTV Headquarters, Seattle Public Library-Central Library, Kunsthal. Rotterdam, Villa Dall'Ava
Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano
Born : September 14, 1937, Pegli, Italy
Notable Works : The Centre Pompidou, The Shard, Whitney Museum of American Art, Tjibaou Cultural Center, Fondation Beyeler
Oscar Niemeyer
Oscar Niemeyer
Born : December 15, 1907, Rio de Janeiro, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Died : December 5, 2012, Rio de Janeiro, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Notable Works : Niterói Contemporary Art Museum, Museu Oscar Niemeyer, Cathedral of Brasilia, Edificio Copan, Ibirapuera Auditorium - Oscar Niemeyer
Antoni Gaudi
Antoni Gaudi
Born : June 25, 1852, Reus, Spain
Died : June 10, 1926, Old Hospital de la Santa Creu, Barcelona, Spain
Notable Works : La Sagrada Familia, Park Güell, Casa Mila, Casa Batlló, Casa Vicens Gaudi
Ieoh Ming Pei
Ieoh Ming Pei
Born : April 26, 1917, Guangzhou, China
Died : May 16, 2019, Manhattan, New York, NY
Notable Works : Suzhou Museum, Louvre Pyramid, Miho Museum, Museum of Islamic Art, Bank of China Tower
Mimar Sinan
Mimar Sinan
Born : April 15, 1489, Karaman, Turkey
Died : July 17, 1588, Turkey
Notable Works : Süleymaniye Mosque, Selimiye Mosque, Mihrimah Sultan Mosque, Topkapi Palace Museum, Sehzade Mosque
Philip Johnson
Philip Johnson
Born : July 8, 1906, Cleveland, OH
Died : January 25, 2005, New Canaan, CT
Notable Works : Glass House, Seagram Building, Christ Cathedral Campus, Rothko Chapel, Chapel of St. Basil
Jørn Utzon
Jørn Utzon
Born : April 9, 1918, Copenhagen, Denmark
Died : November 29, 2008, Helsingør, Denmark
Notable Works : Sydney Opera House, Can Lis, Bagsværd Church, Utzon Center, Kingo Houses
Christopher Wren
Christopher Wren
Born : October 30, 1632, Wiltshire, United Kingdom
Died : March 8, 1723, St. James's, London, United Kingdom
Notable Works : St. Paul's Cathedral, Monument to the Great Fire of London, Kensington Palace, Royal Observatory Greenwich, Temple Bar London