Zaha Hadid Rarely-Seen Sketchbooks at the Serpentine Gallery

Zaha Hadid /// Serpentine Sackler Gallery /// 8 Dec 2016 to 12 Feb 2017

This winter, the Serpentine presents an exhibition of paintings and the rarely seen drawings of the pioneering and visionary architect Zaha Hadid. The exhibition will take place at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery, an extension completed in 2013 and one of Zaha Hadid Architects’ first permanent buildings in central London.

Vision for Madrid, Spain | © Zaha Hadid Architects
Vision for Madrid, Spain | © Zaha Hadid Architects

Zaha Hadid is widely regarded as a pioneering and visionary architect whose contribution to the world of architecture was ground-breaking and innovative. The Serpentine presentation, first conceived with Hadid herself, will reveal her as an artist with drawing at the very heart of her work and will include the architect’s calligraphic drawings and rarely seen private notebooks with sketches that reveal her complex thoughts about architectural forms and their relationships. The show will focus on Hadid’s early works before her first building was erected in 1993 (Vitra Fire Station in Germany) and present her paintings and drawings from the 1970s to the early 1990s. The exhibition will take place at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery, renovated and extended by Zaha Hadid Architects in 2013. A select number of institutions and museums across the world will join in this timely homage to Zaha Hadid.

Concept Painting, Cardiff Bay Opera House, Wales, UK, 1994-1996 | © Zaha Hadid Architects
Concept Painting, Cardiff Bay Opera House, Wales, UK, 1994-1996 | © Zaha Hadid Architects

Drawing and painting were fundamental to Hadid’s practice. Influenced by Malevich, Tatlin, and Rodchenko, she used calligraphic drawings as the main method for visualising her architectural ideas. For Hadid, painting was a design tool, and abstraction an investigative structure for imagining architecture and its relationship to the world we live in. These works on paper and canvas unravel an architecture that Hadid was determined to realise in built structures and is seen in the characteristic lightness and weightlessness of her buildings. Conceived as Hadid’s manifesto of a utopian world, the show reveals her all-encompassing visions of arranging space and interpreting realities.

Learn more about this event here

Serpentine Sackler Gallery /// 8 Dec 2016 to 12 Feb 2017

Admission Free