The designs of Frank Gehry—one of the most innovative architects working today—grace numerous metropolitan skylines around the world. Known for their deconstructivist approach and creative use of materials, his buildings incorporate a wealth of textures that lend a sense of movement to his dynamic structures. Early in his career, Gehry created both sculpture and furniture, which similarly reflected his concern with inventive forms made from unexpected materials. The Easy Edges (1969–73) and Experimental Edges (1979–82) series of chairs and tables were made of industrial corrugated cardboard, while a later Knoll furniture series (1989–92) was made from pliable bentwood. Gehry was commissioned by the Formica Corporation to use a translucent plastic laminate, ColorCore, in a series of lamps consisting of radiant snake and fish forms (1983–86). The fish has been a recurring motif in Gehry’s work, recognizable in the undulating, curvilinear forms of his architecture as well as various sculpture projects, including his Fish Sculpture at Vila Olímpica in Barcelona, Spain (1989–92), and his Standing Glass Fish for the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden (1986). The first Fish Lamps were shown in Frank Gehry: Unique Lamps in 1984 at the former Robertson Boulevard location of Gagosian in Los Angeles.
Gehry was born in 1929 in Toronto. He received a BA in 1954 from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and an MA in 1956 from Harvard University, Massachusetts. Gehry’s drawings, models, designs, and sculptures have been exhibited in major museums throughout the world. Recent solo exhibitions include Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (2001); Frank Gehry, Architect: Designs for Museums, Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis (2003, traveled to Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC); Frank O. Gehry since 1997, Vitra Design Museum, Weil am Rhein, Germany (2010); Voyage of Creation, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2014); Centre Pompidou, Paris (2014); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2015); Architect Frank Gehry: I Have an Idea, 21_21 Design Sight, Tokyo (2015); and Building in Paris, Espace Louis Vuitton, Venice (2016). Among Gehry’s most celebrated buildings are the Vitra International Manufacturing Facility and Design Museum, Germany (1989); Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain (1997); Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles (2003); University of Technology Sydney Business School (2015); and Facebook HQ, Menlo Park, California (2015).
Gehry has received numerous awards and honors, including the Pritzker Architecture Prize (1989); Wolf Prize in Arts (1992); Praemium Imperiale in Architecture, Japan Art Association (1992); Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize (1994); Chrysler Design Award (1995); US National Medal of Arts (1998); Gold Medal, American Institute of Architects (1999); Royal Gold Medal, Royal Institute of British Architects (2000); Lifetime Achievement Award, Americans for the Arts (2000); Henry C. Turner Prize for Innovation in Construction Technology (2007); and US Presidential Medal of Freedom (2016).
Gehry lives and works in Los Angeles.
Frank Gehry Drawings
Frank Gehry speaks to Jean-Louis Cohen about the early years of his practice, including his work with LA artists, and the role of sketching in his design process. The first volume of the catalogue raisonné of the architect’s drawings, edited by Cohen, was published by Cahiers d’Art earlier this year.
The New World of Charlotte Perriand
Inspired by a visit to the Fondation Louis Vuitton’s exhibition Charlotte Perriand: Inventing a New World, William Middleton explores the life of this modernist pioneer and her impact on the worlds of design, art, and architecture.
Frank Gehry: Fondation Louis Vuitton Paris
Frank Gehry discusses the Fondation Louis Vuitton with Derek Blasberg.
Six additional acres have been added to the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden at the New Orleans Museum of Art. The expansion features twenty-six new works including Frank Gehry’s Bear With Us (2014) and Thomas Houseago’s Striding Figure (Rome I) (2013).
Left: Frank Gehry, Bear With Us, 2014 © Frank Gehry. Right: Thomas Houseago, Striding Figure (Rome I), 2013 © Thomas Houseago. Photos: Roman Alokhin
Louis Vuitton X
June 28–November 10, 2019
Louis Vuitton X, Beverly Hills
Louis Vuitton X celebrates the fashion house’s 160-year history of artistic collaborations and marks the world premiere of the Artycapucines Collection. The line includes limited-edition reinterpretations of the label’s iconic Capucines bag by six artists including Urs Fischer, Alex Israel, and Jonas Wood. The exhibition also brings together a collection of early twentieth-century special-order trunks, art deco perfume bottles, iconic Monogram bags reworked by artists such as Frank Gehry and Cindy Sherman, and original collaborations by artists such as Richard Prince.
Jonas Wood’s limited-edition Louis Vuitton Artycapucines bag
Frank Gehry, Maja Hoffmann, Hans Ulrich Obrist
Friday, February 15, 2019, 5pm
Sherry Lansing Theatre, Paramount Studios, Los Angeles
Frank Gehry will speak with Maja Hoffmann, founder of the Luma Foundation, and Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director of the Serpentine Galleries, as part of Frieze’s Conversations on Patronage. The new series explores the social and civic impact of art patronage. The event is free with fair admission.
Photo: David Lauridsen
Frank Gehry in
Berlin and Los Angeles: Space for Music
April 25, 2018–July 30, 2017
The Getty Center, Los Angeles
This exhibition celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the sister-city partnership between Berlin and Los Angeles by exploring two iconic buildings: the Berlin Philharmonic (1963), designed by Hans Scharoun, and the Walt Disney Concert Hall (2003), designed by Frank Gehry. Focusing on the buildings’ extraordinary interiors, the exhibition brings together original drawings, sketches, prints, photographs, and models to convey each architect’s design process.
Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles. Photo by Carol M. Highsmith