Surfaces Reporter Looks Back Over the Life and Best Works of Architect Frank Gehry on his 91st Birthday

Life and Best Works of Architect Frank Gehry Who Turns 91 Today!

The living legend Canadian-American architect Frank Gehry turns 91 today. SURFACES REPORTER (SR) team wishes him a great and healthy life ahead and takes this time to showcase the life and noteworthy works of the eminent architect who destabilized the conventional notions related to construction materials and architectural forms and won critical acclaim for his ‘audacious’ approach to design.

Also Read: Legendary Architect B. V. Doshi

Cardboard Furniture Designs-frank gehryCourtesy: www.smithsonianmag

Born on February 28, 1929, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Gehry immigrated to Los Angeles in 1947 where he studied architecture at the University of Southern California and city planning at Harvard University.  He worked with many architectural firms before establishing his own company Frank O. Gehry & Associates in 1962, which he followed with its successor Gehry Partners in 2002. In contrast to the rigid and formulaic approach of Modernist architecture, he experimented with uncommon techniques and expressive devices to find his distinctive vocabulary. He started with renovations to his home in Santa Monica, California, and continued his experimentation steak in two famous corrugated cardboard furniture project lines, namely Easy Edges and Experimental Edges. Gehry’s approach to design led him to be associated with both the deconstructivist and postmodernism movement in architecture.

Accolades and Recognition

A familiar presence in the major museums, Gehry’s designs and sculptures have been exhibited at Voyage of Creation, Foundation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2014); Centre Pompidou Paris (2014); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2015); and Architect Frank Gehry: I Have an Idea, 21_21 Design Sight, Tokyo (2015). He is the recipient of high honours such as the Pritzker Architecture Prize (1989), US National Medal of Arts, Gold Medal, American Institute of Architects, and US Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016.

Important Works

Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain; Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles; Dancing House, Prague; Olympic Fish Pavilion, Barcelona; and Museum of Pop Culture, Seattle, Washington are some of Gehry’s career highlights, among others. While they have received mixed reactions for their innovative designs, they are essentially an attempt at redefining architecture’s limits and possibilities.

Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain

Cardboard Furniture Designs-Guggenheim museumCourtesy: ArchDaily

The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao represents the sheer magnificence Gehry brought to twentieth-century architecture. Spread over an area of 24,000 m2 , the Museum is an architectural wonder. Its sculpture-like facade is spectacular and perfectly integrated with its urban locality. It is one of Gehry’s most influential works.


Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles

Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles Courtesy: Travel Caffeine

Completed in 2003, Walt Disney Concert Hall’s metallic surface is an embodiment of Gehry’s characteristic style. It is an internationally acclaimed structure and regarded to be one of the most highly acoustically sophisticated in the world. Designed with a vision to provide impeccable acoustics in an intimate setting, the Walt Disney Concert Hall demonstrates the possibilities of newness and difference in architecture.

Dancing House, Prague

Dancing House, Prague Courtesy: Foundation Design

Opened in 1996, ‘Dancing House’ is the nickname for one of the most important architectural landmarks in Prague, i.e. the Nationale-Nederlanden building. It consists of nine floors and serves as a luxurious hotel presently. With a symbolic representation of a dancing duo in stone and glass respectively, one of its towers is topped with a crown-like structure and coated with an intricately enmeshed network of stainless steel.

Read more about this house here: World’s Bizarre Architecture: Frank Gehry’s Dancing House in Prague, Czech Republic

Olympic Fish Pavilion, Barcelona

Olympic Fish Pavilion, Barcelona Courtesy: Culture Trip

Constructed for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, Frank Gehry’s Golden Fish Structure is 52m long and 35m high. It is made up of golden stainless steel that changes colour as per the weather conditions on any given day. The fish structure exudes a vibrant light and serves as a canopy to the restaurants, which link Hotel Arts to the nearby seafront. A monumental breakthrough, its architectural ingenuity is widely recognised.

New York by Gehry, New York City

New York by Gehry, New York CityCourtesy: Dezeen

At 76 stories, New York by Gehry is one of the tallest residential towers in Manhattan’s Financial District. It contains 903 apartments and is an “undulating facade of billowing, rippling stainless steel.” It has mostly received favourable reviews from critics in the architectural industry and like other Gehry’s constructions, designed to provoke thought and challenge conventions associated with architectural styles and forms.

Marques de Riscal Hotel, Elciego

Marques de Riscal Hotel, Elciego Courtesy: Marriott

Opened in 2006, Marques de Riscal Hotel in Elciego was designed to promote the winery and wine industry. Gehry, therefore, had used titanium-hued panels to represent the burgundy tone of Rioja. Additionally, he had opted for colours like gold and silver for a symbolic representation of the wine bottles. The hotel is luxurious, and in accordance with its architectural spirit, offers spas based on “wine therapies.”

Lou Ruvo Centre for Brain Health, Cleveland

Lou Ruvo Centre for Brain Health, Cleveland Courtesy: Arch20

Constructed in a 60,000-square-foot complex, Gehry’s Lou Ruvo Centre is made up of two different buildings that are joined together by a steel trellis. Its structure is voluminous and located behind an orthogonal working space that acts as a research centre, clinic, and headquarters for Larry Ruvo’s non-profit foundation, namely Keep Memory Alive. The Centre is one of Gehry’s most inspiring works and equipped with areas designated for medical consultation, research, auditorium, and Museum of Mind separately.

Louis Vuitton Foundation, Paris

Louis Vuitton Foundation, ParisCourtesy: Enfnts Terribles

Started in 2006, the Louis Vuitton Foundation is both a cultural centre and an art museum. Its design evokes the nineteenth century’s glass garden building tradition, which seeks to serve as a cultural attraction for the visitors. Built on the borders of the water garden, the Foundation’s building is supported by wooden beams and contains a network of white blocks that are made up of fibre-reinforced concrete.

Museum of Pop Culture, Seattle, Washington

Museum of Pop Culture, Seattle, Washington Courtesy: Smithsonian Magazine

Known as “the Blob” in local parlance, Frank Gehry’s Museum of Pop Culture is a 140,00-square-foot building made out of a shimmering metal sheet. It resembles the shape of a disintegrated electric guitar and serves as a meeting point for arts like music and science fiction, among other things. With a vision for “curating, exploring, and supporting the creative works”, the Museum was opened in 2010.

Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis

Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis Courtesy: Sah Archipedia

Located at the University of Minnesota campus, Weisman Art Museum was completed in 1993. Originally, it featured steel-clad turrets and skylit galleries that stood atop a garage. But Gehry, in partnership with HGA, extended it into three directions. The building’s facade overlooks the Mississippi River and is reminiscent of the Cubist movement of the earlier decades. In essence, his renovation demonstrated the fluid possibility of stainless steel.

Keep reading SURFACES REPORTER for more articles and stories.

Join us in SOCIAL MEDIA to stay updated


Further, Subscribe to our magazine Sign Up for the FREE Surfaces Reporter Magazine Newsletter

You may also like to read about:

Architect Christopher Charles Benninger

SR Wishes Ar Christopher Charles Benninger a very Happy Birthday | Know the Amazing Women who influenced his Life and Career

and more...


Post Your Comment

"Content that powers your Business. News that keeps you informed."

Surfaces Reporter is one of India's leading media in Print & Digital Telecast for News on Interiors & Architecture Projects, Products, Building Materials, and the Business of Design! Since 2011, it serves as a referral for designers & architects to know about inspiring projects and source new products. If you have a Product or Project worth publishing in Surfaces Reporter, please email us or you can also submit your project online.

Like Surfaces Reporter on Facebook | Follow us on Twitter and Instagram | Subscribe to our magazine | Sign Up for the FREE Surfaces Reporter Magazine Newsletter

World Architecture Day: 25 Beautifully Designed Architectural Wonders

Architecture and design are few of the art forms which have successfully mesmerized the world and stayed firm through the test of time. Besides imagination and inspiration, originality and craftsmanship plays a pivotal role in establishing a structure.

Read more

Rising 15 Meters Above The Ground, Acucena House Is An Architectural Wonder Created By Tetro Arquitetura | Brazil

Located in the heart of a forest in Brazil, this white-clad house surprises everyone who reaches here. Rising fifteen meters off the ground through the stilts penetrated the earth, the Acucena House envisioned and designed by Tetro Arquitetura looks like a white flower surrounded by nature.

Read more

OPPO Headquarters in China: Another Architectural Wonder by Zaha Hadid Architects

The New OPPO headquarters is a visual wonder by the Zaha Hadid Architects. Plans revealed!

Read more

10 Architectural Wonders Built in the Name Of Love

As Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, we can see love birds gearing up to express their true love for each other. Usually, lovers express their feelings by offering romantic gifts to their partner.

Read more

This is alt