Jean Nouvel was born in Fumel in 1945 and studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Paris. A key protagonist of intellectual debate in France regarding architecture, he was a founding member of Mars 1976 and Syndicat de l’Architecture. Nouvel’s buildings include Musée du Quai Branly, Paris; Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain, Paris; Lucerne Culture and Congress Centre, Switzerland; Torre Agbar, Barcelona; and Guthrie Theater, Minneapolis. The Louvre Abu Dhabi, the National Museum of China (NAMOC), and the Philharmonie de Paris at La Villette are among the projects currently in planning. Nouvel’s distinctions include the Aga Khan Award for Architecture for the Institut du Monde Arabe (1989); the Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects (2001); the Wolf Prize in Arts (2005); and the Pritzker Prize (2008). Exhibitions of his work—including “Jean Nouvel,” a retrospective at Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (2001)—have been held throughout the world, from New York to Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo.
In 1995 Nouvel created the Jean Nouvel Design Agency (JND) to develop design and interior architecture projects in parallel with the architectural practice Ateliers Jean Nouvel. Several series of furniture and industrial objects have been developed and commercialized, from the Less collection (Unifor), coffee service (Alessi), lighting (Artemide & Troll), partitioning systems (Methis), seating (Roset), and tables (Cassina & Molteni).
Nouvel collaborated with Gagosian in the design of a 1850 square meter gallery at Le Bourget, Paris, which opened in October 2012. He has also designed a limited edition mirrored shoe in collaboration with Ruco Line, Italy, that accompanied the Gagosian Davies Street, London exhibition.