I.M. I. M. Pei. I.M. Pei, the preeminent US architect who forged a distinct brand of modern building design with his sharp lines and stark structures, has died in New York, his sons' architecture firm said Thursday. He was also controversial, especially after he designed a glass-and-steel pyramid for Paris’ Musée du Louvre in the early 1980s. Mr. Pei’s addition to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, known as the East Building, is made from massive blocks of Tennessee marble arranged around a triangular courtyard. Mr. Pei, many critics said, had found a way to get beyond both the casual, temporal air and the coldness of much modern architecture, and to create a building that was both boldly monumental and warmly inviting, even exhilarating. But political objections to the library’s original site in Cambridge delayed the project for years, and by the time it was built, both the new site, at Columbia Point in Boston Harbor, and the scaled-down design represented major compromises. Pei, a slight man who wore round, owl-ish glasses, became a U.S. citizen in 1955. President Jimmy Carter dedicated the East Building of the National Gallery of Art in Washington in 1978. In the early 1980s President François Mitterrand, an admirer of the East Building at the National Gallery, invited Mr. Pei to update and expand the Louvre Museum, which was sorely in need of renovation to accommodate a huge increase in visitors. During the years the Kennedy Library was being planned, the Pei firm grew rapidly. I.M. I.M. Best known for designing the East Building of the National Gallery of Art in Washington and the glass pyramid at the entrance to the Louvre in Paris, Mr. Pei was one of the few architects who were equally attractive to real estate developers, corporate chieftains and art museum boards (the third group, of course, often made up of members of the first two). A longtime collector of Western Abstract Expressionist art, he admitted to knowing little about Islamic art. Pei’s architecture firm Pei Cobb Freed and Partners confirmed to HuffPost that Pei had died. Pei's death was confirmed Thursday by Marc Diamond, a spokesman for the architect's New York firm, Pei Cobb Freed & Partners. Pei, the architect who designed the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame in Cleveland and the courtyard of the Lourve, has died at the age of 102. But the commission that truly thrust Mr. Pei into the forefront of American architects was for a building that would take 15 years to build and would bring him a sense of triumph and frustration in equal parts: the John F. Kennedy Library. Discover what happened on this day. Throughout his long career he combined a willingness to use bold, assertive forms with a pragmatism born in his years with Zeckendorf, and he alternated between designing commercial projects and making a name for himself in other architectural realms. If you see something that doesn’t look right, contact us. Pei, whose acclaimed architecture transformed the built environment around the world, has died at age 102. I.M. He was married to Eileen Loo from 1942 until her death in 2014. The building ultimately won numerous awards, including the American Institute of Architects’ 25-Year Award. While he was at M.I.T., Mr. Pei met another Chinese national, Eileen Loo, who had come to the United States in 1938 to study art at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Pei was awarded the Pritzker Prize in 1983. No matter how committed William Zeckendorf was to Mr. Pei’s designs, however, he was still a commercial real estate developer, and Mr. Pei did not want to spend his entire career working for someone else. He was still writing until ….. “The glass company had a lot of money, and Hancock had a lot of money, but we didn’t have a lot of money,” he told The Times in 2007. Pei, Architect Of International Landmarks, Dies At 102 During his influential career, the Pritzker-winning architect designed everything from schools to … I.M. His son Li Chung “Sandi” Pei confirmed the death but did not provide a specific cause. Generation. In retirement, Mr. Pei remained eager for news of both architecture and art and, until his last year, continued to make the occasional trip downtown to lunch with friends and consume his share of red Bordeaux. As he blew out the candles on an enormous cake in the angular shape of the monumental Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, his last major building project, Mr. Pei beamed. Carol M. Highsmith/Buyenlarge, via Getty Images. Pei, the Pritzker Prize-winning Chinese-American architect famous for his soaring, lyrical renditions of contemporary architecture, has passed away at … At the recommendation of his father, who was concerned about the threat of war and the growing possibility of a Communist revolution in China, he postponed his plan to return home. Pei, the Chinese-born, American-trained Modernist architect whose work transformed cities around the world and was widely celebrated by fellow architects, has died. I. M. Pei’s mother’s name is unknown at this time and his father’s name is under review. In the late 1920s, after the death of Pei What he valued most in architecture, he said, was that it “stand the test of time.”, He maintained that he wanted not just to solve problems but also to produce “an architecture of ideas.” He worried, he added, “that ideas and professional practice do not intersect enough.”. 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