The Italian-British architect Richard Rogers died this Saturday night at the age of 88 according to several international media that cite that the death was confirmed by his son Roo Rogers, without further details about the cause of death having been disclosed.
Rogers of Riverside had been a member of the House of Lords since 1997 and in 2007 he received the Pritzker Prize, considered the “nobel of architecture.” It was the author, in collaboration with the Spanish studio Antonio Lamela, of the new terminal T4 at the Adolfo Suárez de Madrid – Barajas airport.
Born in the Italian city of Florence on July 23, 1933 in Florence into an English family, he spent only five years of his childhood in Italy, until the family moved to London.
He studied Architecture at the London Architectural Association and later expanded his training at Yale University (USA).
Defender of the potential of the city as a catalyst for social change, the British architect, author of the T-4 terminal at Barajas airport, considered architecture both an urban problem and a political issue.
He defended the compact city as the only formula for a sustainable city, which has marked milestones in the history of contemporary architecture. His advocacy for energy efficiency and sustainability has left its mark on the profession.
The thread that unites Rogers’ work, with studies in London, Barcelona, Madrid and Tokyo, is a formal rigor that includes a deep knowledge of materials and construction techniques in combination with his passion for the aesthetic value of architecture .
Even so, his fascination for technology does not have a merely artistic purpose but is directed towards a construction focused on greater productivity for which it is intended.
It was one of the most representative of modern functional architecture. His prestige was growing first with the group Team 4, which formed the couples Norman and Wendy Foster and he and his first wife, Sue Rogers. With Team 4 he released his first job, the Reliance Controls Factory in Swindon (1966-1967), in England.
In 1967, after the dissolution of the quartet, Richard G. Rogers began to mature projects in his avant-garde or high-tech line after partnering with the Italian Renzo Piano in the design of one of his most emblematic works: the National Center of Art and Culture Georges Pompidou (1972-1977) from Paris, later restored between 1998 and 1999, and where pipes and vents fit in artistically with their brilliant colors.
With this building they revolutionized the concept of the museum, “transforming what was once an elite monument into a popular place for cultural exchange, located in the heart of the city.”
In 1977 he founded his own studio in the British capital, the architectural society that bears his name, the Richard Rogers Partnership.
Other more outstanding works of the architect are the London headquarters of the Lloyds firm (1978-1986) and the Lloyd’s Register building (1993-2000).
The Lloyds building in London together with the Terminal T-4 in Barajas demonstrate, in addition to his category as a master of urban architecture, a unique interpretation of architectural expression, of his fascination for the modern movement through a conception of the building as a machine and a special interest in transparent architecture, integrating spaces.
The author is the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg (1989-1994) and the Palais de Justice de Bordeaux (1992-1998), both in France.
Also Terminal 5 at London Heathrow Airport (1989-2008); the Channel 4 building of the Gala TV in the British capital (1990-1994); the new financial district of Shanghai (1992-1994), in China; the Dome of the New Millennium (1996-1999), in London; the headquarters of the Welsh National Assembly in Cardiff (1998-2005); or the London Grand Union building (2001).
In Spain he built the new terminal at Madrid Barajas airport -T 4- (1997-2005), together with the Spanish Antonio Lamela, inaugurated in February 2006. For this work he received the “Stirling” award for architecture, the most important in the Kingdom Kingdom, awarded each year by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
Other examples of its architectural modernity in Spain are the Protos de Peñafiel Winery building (1993-1999), in Valladolid; the Balearic Park for Technological Innovation “ParcBIT” (1995-2001), active in Mallorca since 2002; the Hesperia Hotel and Convention Center in Barcelona (1999-2006); and the remodeling of the old Las Arenas de Barcelona bullring into a leisure center (2000-2006).
Sir Richard George Rogers, since 1991, had the Order of the French Legion of Honor, 1986 and in addition to Pritzer, he also had the Royal Institute of British Architects Gold Medal (1985).
He was an Honorary Friend of Barcelona (1997), for his collaboration in changing the city, in addition to the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation Medal (1999) and the Praemium Imperiale (2000).
Madrid’s T-4 at Barajas airport, the Georges Pompidou Center in Paris, the Lloyds building in London and the Court of Antwerp were some of the stars of “Richard Rogers + Architects.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.