Jean Nouvel

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Jean Nouvel
Born 1945; Fumel, Lot-et-Garonne, France
Education École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts, Paris, France
Firms Ateliers Jean Nouvel, Paris, France
At Great Buildings



Selected Works of Note

Completed Projects in Chronological Order


Jean Nouvel was born in 1945 at Fumel, a village in the South West of France. He worked with an architectural firm while attending school. In 1975, he opened his own office and participated in several competitions.

Since he opened his office, Nouvel has worked to create a stylistic language separate from that of modernism and post-modernism. Rejecting the strict obedience to Le Corbusier that had stifled much of modern architecture, Nouvel initiates each project with his mind cleared of any preconceived ideas. Although he may borrow from traditional forms, he creates a building that stretches beyond traditional constraints.

Nouvel places enormous importance on designing a building harmonious with its site and surroundings. Although Nouvel relies on context to generate his designs, a certain continuum occurs from one design to the next. Within nearly all of his designs, Nouvel consistently presents an interplay of transparency, shadow, and light.

In 1981 Jean Nouvel won the competition for a series of "great projects" requested by Francois Mitterrand, the French President. In 1987 he was awarded the "Grand Prix d'Architecture" for his whole body of work and the "Equerre d'Argent" for his design work on minimalist pieces of furniture.


Recipient of the Japan Art Association's Praemium Imperiale , 2001

Related Content from Wikipedia

<interwiki>Jean Nouvel</interwiki>


  • "Jean Nouvel Pritzker Prize," by Kevin Matthews, ArchitectureWeek no. 374, 2008.0402, pN1.1.
  • "Nouvel's Torre Agbar," by Katharine Logan, ArchitectureWeek No. 300, 2006.0823, pD1.1.
  • Goulet, Patrice. Works of Jean Nouvel: special feature. A + U Vol no. 214, p147-134 July '88.

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