Architect Richard Rogers, the man behind Centre Pompidou in Paris and many other buildings, died at the age of 88.
Roger Stirk Harbour + Partners, Rogers’ London-based architecture firm, confirmed his death on Sunday, though the cause of his death wasn’t revealed. Announcing his death, the firm wrote: “A man of immense drive and charisma, he was equally a man of civility and integrity, dedicated to the art and science of architecture, of urbanism, the life of the city, of political commitment and positive social change.”
Richard Rogers was considered one of the most esteemed architects in the world. His works were often subject to criticism when launched but eventually considered iconic and path-breaking. He is perhaps most well-known for designing the Centre Pompidou in Paris alongside Renzo Piano. The famous art center was first commissioned in 1971 and finished in 1977. Its design was essentially an inverted building, with things like electrical and plumbing systems located on the outside. On its launch, the design was met with skepticism and derision. However, over the years, the building has become iconic for its design. In 2016, it was ranked #16 in a list of Most Iconic Post-War Buildings in the world.
Richard Rogers also designed many other iconic buildings in his career. The Llyod’s Building in London used the similar exterior-design theme of Centre Pompidou and is now considered one of the landmarks of the city. He also designed the Millenium Dome in 2000 to commemorate the new millennium. Rogers was also often consulted in policy-making, like serving as the chief advisor of the architecture of Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London, between 2001-2008.
Over his career, Richard Rogers came to be recognized as one of the most important contemporary architects in the world. He has been a recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize the highest prize in the field of architecture. He was also made the member of Chevaliers de l’Ordre de la Légion d’Honneur, an honour rarely bestowed upon architects. In his 2017 book A Place for All People: Life, Architecture, and Fair Society, Rogers wrote: “Architecture is inseparable from the social and economic values of the individuals who practise it and the society which sustains it.’”