One of the most original architects working in the United States today,
Frank Gehry was born in Toronto, Canada, in 1929. When he was young,
his grandparents, Jewish immigrants from Poland, owned a hardware
store. From the age of 10, Gehry worked there part-time. Stocking
the store shelves with the usual hardware inventory of nails, screws,
pipes, hammers, bolts, saws, chains, fencing, roofing, paint and glass,
young Gehry became fascinated with "the nature of materials." With
his grandmother, Gehry would collect scraps from the floor of the
store's "fix-it" department and use them to create models for futuristic
cities and other constructions.
When Gehry was 17, he moved with his family to Los Angeles, California.
Gehry studied architecture at the University of Southern California.
Later, he studied city Planning at Harvard University. He established
his own firm in 1962 in Los Angeles. Since that time, he has designed
public and private buildings in America, Japan and Europe. While
his designs for buildings are often unusual and controversial, many
people consider him one of the most important architects working
today. He has received international recognition and numerous architectural
In addition to designing buildings, Gehry has also designed cardboard
and bent-wood furniture, fish-shaped lamps and sculptures. He has
often worked with painters, sculptors and performers, particularly
Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen, creators of the Spoonbridge
and Cherry sculpture in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Near
Spoonbridge and Cherry, housed in a glass conservatory, one
of Genry's largest fish sculptures is also on view. For more information
about Frank Gehry see Identity Theme.
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