Image courtesy of Pei Cobb Freed & Partners
The Bank of China Tower, Hong Kong
Completed in 1989, the Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong, which was the tallest in Asia at the time of its opening, is designed to echo bamboo’s structure, and its breathtaking angle across the skyline has changed the geometry of the city up top.
The Louvre Pyramid, Paris
When it was announced that President Francois Mitterand had chosen Pei, a non-Frenchman—moreover, a man of Asian descent—to renovate and modernize the Louvre, the people of France were aghast. Pei won them over with an ancient, timeless structure (the pyramid) in a modern material (crystal) that cracked open the underground galleries. It was a portal to modernity for an old, tired museum—and now an international icon.
Courtesy of Pei Cobb Freed & Partners
East Wing of The National Gallery, Washington, D.C.
Opened in 1978, the East Wing of the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. is considered one of Pei’s masterpieces, a high-wire act that traversed tricky politics and the museum’s original design while giving the public a showpiece glass ceiling and walls that came to a fine edge as sharp as a blade’s.