I.M. Pei 100th Anniversary
DATE: 26/4/2017
Last 26th April I.M. Pei celebrated his 100th anniversary!

"At a recent event honoring Pei at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, which he attended from 1942 to 1946, his long-time professional partner Harry Cobb told a resonant story. It seems that when Pei was finishing his degree, he proposed a thesis topic to Walter Gropius, the legendary founder of the Bauhaus, who had taken over the Harvard program in 1937. The thesis was for a museum in a garden to be located in Shanghai, drawing on Pei’s knowledge of traditional Chinese landscape design.

According to Cobb, Gropius would have none of it, saying that tradition had no place at the GSD, which was about “changing the world” by discarding history and starting anew. Pei persisted, and Gropius relented—but he told Pei that he would have to “prove” to him the merit of his case.

When the young student finished his thesis, it attracted so much attention that it was published in Progressive Architecture magazine, and Gropius was humble enough to write a warm endorsement to accompany the drawings.
[...]
No one would describe Pei as a revolutionary. But he has consistently gone against the received wisdom—and he has been proved right in almost every case.

On his 100th birthday, Pei may not yet have reached his finis, but he has never abandoned the origine of independence that he showed in defying Walter Gropius."

Docomomo International congratulate I.M. Pei and wishes him all the best success.

Original article: website