Zaha Hadid at The Serpentine Sackler Gallery


Report by Sarah Roberts

Zaha Hadid spent her life defying people’s expectations. Her mantra, that "There should be no end to experimentation", carried her through her career, and she played with shape and form in ways that few architects have dared to, erecting a vast array of iconic buildings around the world.

The Serpentine Sackler Gallery pays homage to Hadid following her death earlier this year, with an exhibition that displays a series of her drawings, paintings and early designs, including canvases made of complex, colourful geometric shapes. Hadid designed the Sackler Gallery herself in 2013, and had been a Serpentine Galleries Trustee since 1996.

Hadid is remembered as an innovative architect, but her talent as an artist is often unacknowledged. The Serpentine Sackler Gallery has put on display Hadid’s varied and extraordinary body of work, in the form of paintings and drawings, some of which later manifested as buildings. Hadid used calligraphic sketches to visualize ideas and spaces, and many of her private sketchbooks will be present at the exhibition.

The main focus of the exhibition is works created by Hadid before the completion of her first building, the Vitra Fire Station, in 1993. This early work is the nucleus of some of the world’s most exciting designs, like the curved Heydar Aliyev Centre in Azerbaijan and the winged London Aquatics Centre that was built ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games.

The exhibition will run at the The Serpentine Sackler Galleryuntil February 12th 2017.