Magazine

Resume: Frank Owen Gehry


In Depression-era Canada, young Gehry built "cities" from spare parts

BORN

Feb. 28, 1929, in Toronto

EDUCATION

Bachelor of Architecture degree, University of Southern California, 1954; dropped out of Harvard's graduate school of design after one year in 1957.

POSITION

President, Gehry Partners, based in Marina del Rey, Calif.

SOURCES OF INSPIRATION

Tries to instill motion in stationary objects, citing sources as diverse as Indian Shiva sculptures and the carp his grandmother bought to make gefilte fish.

MOST FAMOUS BUILDING

The 1997 Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. Increase in tourism dubbed "the Gehry effect."

MOST NOTORIOUS DESIGN

Remodeled family home in Santa Monica with chain-link fence and plywood in the late 1970s. The neighbors hated it.

FIRST CURVY BUILDING

The 1989 Vitra furniture factory and museum in Germany.

ONE SECRET TO HIS SUCCESS

Gehry uses design software called CATIA that brings his complex drawings to life and allows contractors to produce exact measurements of the materials needed.

LITTLE-KNOWN FACT

Gehry used to play hockey regularly and has hired many junior architects who also like to get out on the ice.

FAMILY

Two daughters with first wife, Anita, who asked him to change his last name from Goldberg. Two sons with current wife, Berta, who serves as the Gehry firm's chief financial officer.


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