Wednesday, October 28

"I don't do nice" - Zaha Hadid's deconstructivism

Zaha Hadid, (Arabic: زها حديد‎), was born in 1950 in Baghdad, Iraq. A notable British Iraqi deconstructivist architect that after graduating from Architectural Association School of Architecture in London, worked with her former teachers, Rem Koolhaas and Elia Zenghelis at the Office for Metropolitan Architecture, becoming a partner in 1977. It was with Koolhaas that she met the engineer Peter Rice who gave her support and encouragement early on, at a time when her work seemed difficult to build. In 1980 she established her own London-based practice, Zaha Hadid Architects. In 2004 Hadid became the first female recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, architecture's equivalent of the Nobel Prize.

Abu Dhabi Performing Arts Centre project. 
See more photos of the amazing model at

Trying to understand her style is a challenge, so let's just listen to her words "In another way, I can be my own worst enemy. As a woman, I'm expected to want everything to be nice, and to be nice myself. A very English thing. I don't design nice buildings - I don't like them. I like architecture to have some raw, vital, earthy quality. You don't need to make concrete perfectly smooth or paint it or polish it. If you consider changes in the play of light on a building before it's built, you can vary the colour and feel of concrete by daylight alone. Some winters ago, I flew from New York to Chicago in the snow; at sunset, the landscape and cityscapes became no colours other than starkly contrasted black and white, while the rivers and lakes were blood red. Amazing. You wouldn't call that a nice landscape, but it had the quality of light and life I would love to get into our buildings."

Madrid Civil Court Building Project. 

"I'm trying to discover - invent, I suppose - an architecture, and forms of urban planning, that do something of the same thing in a contemporary way. I started out trying to create buildings that would sparkle like isolated jewels; now I want them to connect, to form a new kind of landscape, to flow together with contemporary cities and the lives of their peoples."

2012 Olympics Aquatic Center. To read more about the changes the project suffered visit:

For an architect," she says, "everything connects. The design of a handbag, or furniture or cutlery [Hadid has recently produced designs for three] have their challenges, and they're fun to do. I'd love to get some designs into mass, low-cost production. I want to be able to touch everyone, not just the educated and cultural elite, with a little of what we can do. One of the things I feel confident in saying we can do is bring some excitement, and challenges, to people's lives. We want them to be able to embrace the unexpected." She recently collaborated with Lacoste by designing exclusive futuristic boots that will be for sale this year.

She also designed vanguardist structural boots for Melissa's shoes, watch the video at: and watch the video of the making of the scaled model bellow. Personally, I would have designed them with a higher heel and all the way to the knee, more sexy and feminine.

Learn about more incredible plastic design shoes of the Brazilian brand Melissa by Zaha Haddid.

Order your copy, Taschen published this September a great compilation book: HADID Complete Works 1979 - 2009.

Walk through her projects, feel the space and understand her unique vision.

Follow Zaha Haddid's BLOG


  1. Incredible designs, she is turning impossible to reality... that is creativity.

  2. That mens shoes is absolutely incredible. I hope goes on any clothing. There are very cool.
    - Joe Carvlho. Thanks. ☆☆☆☆☆