Zaha Hadid, a visionary and one of the most influential architects of today, tragically passed away last March. The queen of the curve, as she was known, due to her brave and undulating structures that became her trademark in emblematic buildings such as the London Olympic Aquatic Centre, the Heydar Aliyev cultural centre in Baku, Azerbaijan, or in a more modest way, the extension of the Serpentine Sackler Gallery in Kensington Gardens, west London. However, Hadid’s practice extended to other fields in furniture, interior design and even fashion.
UltraStellar is Zaha Hadid’s final collection of furniture for her long-term gallerist and close friend David Gill under the creative direction of Francis Sultana, CEO of the gallery. UltraStellar also offers the chance for the gallery to look forward to the on-going relationship between Zaha Hadid Design and David Gill Gallery under the new direction of Patrik Schumacher. The show is currently on display until the 29th of October in David Gill‘s premises in 2-4 King street, St James’s, London. Her designs represents the fluidity between water and earth blurring the boundaries what it is supposed to be solid and what it is supposed to be liquid. Beyond beauty and beyond preconceptions.
As Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director and Yana Peel, CEO, of the Serpentine Galleries, said:
“Her contribution to architecture as a pioneer and visionary cannot be overstated, and her declaration that there should be no end to experimentation’ has become a mantra for the Serpentine Galleries as it looks to the future”
A new exhibition showing Hadid’s lesser known early drawings and paintings will open at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery on the 8th of December. Hugely recommended for anyone who wants to complement their understanding of Hadid’s output.
Francis Sultana, CEO of the David Gill gallery, has kindly agreed to respond to the following questions:
1. Congratulations on winning the Best Stand at PAD, Art & Design Fair. What does it mean to win such a prize? And what was the reason of selecting Michele Oka Doner for the presentation?
We felt that Michele’s work to be so unique and her career so impressive that she warranted her own stand this year. Michele is an immersive artist and so it made sense to let her create a stage for her own work – which she did by hand – creating a set from board and metallic pigment which offered an atmosphere for her work that seemed to resonate both with the judges and with collectors alike. It really was quite spectacular. Winning a prize for Best Stand is a lovely thing for the artist – especially when they have actually put so much effort in to a show – but also for the whole team at the gallery who work so hard on these events.
2. Where does Zaha Hadid’s show title “UltraStellar” come from?
It just seemed to come to me, when I was thinking of Zaha looking down on us all – I could hear her voice throughout the development of the collection from her final drawings and renders to the actual finished pieces – she was a star in her own life-time and now as we celebrated her incredible journey on Monday (at St Paul’s) and during this final show of her work, it really seemed to be the perfect name – slightly futuristic and rather ethereal. I think its just the perfect name.
Chair Ultra Stellar. Courtesy Zaha Hadid Design and David Gill Gallery.
3. What is the reason when you decided to work with Zaha and Patrik? How was it like to be working with her?
David Gill was an old friend of Zaha’s and they knew each other for many years when we decided to try and work together. We launched our first collection – Dune Formations – at the Biennale in Venice in 2007. It was a bit of a headache trying to get the pieces over there and exhibit but it was the formation of an enduring relationship – I think Zaha and Patrik liked the fact that they can work with us very closely and creatively and they have the budget to experiment and create extraordinary pieces that will find an audience with our collectors – new ideas they can play with at the top end of the market with David Gill Gallery.
4. Why do you think people should come to see the show?
The show will give people who love Zaha the chance to see her final work – there will be no more, which is such a sad thing for me to say – but really this is it. We look forward very much to taking what we created with Zaha and moving forward with Patrik but of course Zaha was a special genius and a very close friend and it has been with joy and with sadness that we have put this, her last and final collection of work, together. I hope people visiting will enjoy the pieces and have the chance to contemplate what an incredible talent we have lost.
For more information about Hadid’s current show at David Gill Gallery, please visit their website on http://www.davidgillgallery.com/
For more information about Hadid’s upcoming show at the Serpentine Sackler Gallery, please visit their website on http://www.serpentinegalleries.org/