I.M. Pei, Master Architect Whose Buildings Dazzled the World, Dies at 102
I.M. Pei, who began his long career designing buildings for a New York real estate developer and ended it as one of the most revered architects in the world, died early Thursday at his home in Manhattan. He was 102.
His death was confirmed by his son Li Chung Pei, who is also an architect and known as Sandi. He said his father had recently celebrated his birthday with a family dinner.
Best known for designing the East Building of the National Gallery of Art in Washington and the glass pyramid at the entrance to the Louvre in Paris, Pei was one of the few architects who were equally attractive to real estate developers, corporate chieftains and art museum boards (the third group, of course, often made up of members of the first two). And all his work ― from his commercial skyscrapers to his art museums ― represented a careful balance of the cutting edge and the conservative.
Pei remained a committed modernist, and while none of his buildings could ever be called old-fashioned or traditional, his particular brand of modernism ― clean, reserved, sharp-edged and unapologetic in its use of simple geometries and its aspirations to monumentality ― sometimes seemed to be a throwback, at least when compared with the latest architectural trends.
This hardly bothered him. What he valued most in architecture, he said, was that it "stand the test of time."
Pei, who was born in China and moved to the United States in the 1930s, was hired by William Zeckendorf in 1948, shortly after he received his graduate degree in architecture from Harvard, to oversee the design of buildings produced by Zeckendorf's firm, Webb & Knapp.
贝聿铭出生于中国，1930年代移居美国。1948年，在哈佛大学获得建筑学硕士学位后不久，他受聘于威廉・泽肯多夫(William Zeckendorf)，在泽肯多夫的公司齐氏威奈(Webb & Knapp)主持建筑设计工作。
Pei quickly found himself engaged in the design of high-rise buildings, and he used that experience as a springboard to establish his own firm, I.M. Pei & Associates, which he set up in 1955 with Henry Cobb and Eason Leonard, the team he had assembled at Webb & Knapp.
贝聿铭很快开始从事高层建筑的设计，并将这段经历作为跳板，于1955年同他在齐氏威奈的团队成员亨利・科布(Henry Cobb)和伊森・莱纳德(Eason Leonard)一起，成立了自己的公司贝聿铭及合伙人建筑师事务所(I.M. Pei & Associates)。
In its early years, I.M. Pei & Associates mainly executed projects for Zeckendorf, including Kips Bay Plaza in New York, finished in 1963; Society Hill Towers in Philadelphia (1964); and Silver Towers in New York (1967). All were notable for their gridded concrete facades.
早年，事务所主要为泽肯多夫做项目，包括1963年竣工的纽约基普斯湾广场(Kips Plaza)；1964年竣工的费城协会山塔(Society Hill Towers)和1967年竣工的纽约银塔(Silver Towers)。它们都以栅格形混凝土外立面而闻名。
The firm became fully independent from Webb & Knapp in 1960, by which time Pei was winning commissions for major projects that had nothing to do with Zeckendorf. Among these were the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, completed in 1967, and the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse, New York, and the Des Moines Art Center in Iowa, both finished in 1968.
1960年，贝聿铭事务所彻底从齐氏威奈独立出来，当时贝聿铭已经能拿到与泽肯多夫无关的大型项目。其中包括科罗拉多州博尔德的国家大气研究中心(National Center for Atmospheric Research)，于1967年竣工；纽约州雪城的埃弗森艺术博物馆(Everson Museum of Art)，以及艾奥瓦州的得梅因艺术中心(Des Moines Art Center)，二者均于1968年竣工。
They were the first in a series of museums he designed that would come to include the East Building in Washington (1978) and the Louvre pyramid (1989) as well as the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland.
这是他设计的一系列博物馆中的第一批，其他博物馆包括华盛顿的国家美术馆东馆（1978年）和卢浮宫金字塔（1989年），以及克利夫兰的摇滚名人堂和博物馆(Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum)。
The Cleveland project would not be Pei's last unlikely museum commission: His museum oeuvre would culminate in the call to design the Museum of Islamic Art, in Doha, Qatar, in 2008, a challenge Pei accepted with relish. A longtime collector of Western abstract expressionist art, he admitted to knowing little about Islamic art.
克利夫兰的项目看上去不太像是贝聿铭会做的博物馆，但这样的案例后面还有：2008年，卡塔尔多哈的伊斯兰艺术博物馆(Museum of Islamic Art)标志着他的博物馆设计达到了巅峰，贝聿铭兴致勃勃地接受了这个挑战。长期以来，他一直是西方抽象表现主义艺术的收藏家，他承认自己对伊斯兰艺术知之甚少。
As with the rock museum, Pei saw the Qatar commission as an opportunity to learn about a culture he did not claim to understand. He began his research by reading a biography of the Prophet Muhammad, and then commenced a tour of great Islamic architecture around the world.
Besides his many art museums, he designed concert halls, academic structures, hospitals, office towers and civic buildings like the Dallas City Hall, completed in 1977; the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston, finished in 1979; and the Guggenheim Pavilion of Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, finished in 1992.
除了众多艺术博物馆，他还设计过音乐厅、学术建筑、医院、办公楼和市政建筑，比如1977年竣工的达拉斯市政厅(Dallas City Hall)；1979年竣工的波士顿约翰・F・肯尼迪图书馆(John F. Kennedy Library)；以及1992年竣工的纽约西奈山医院的古根海姆大楼(Guggenheim Pavilion of Mount Sinai Hospital)。
(I.M. Pei & Associates eventually became I.M. Pei & Partners and later named Pei Cobb and Freed.)
（I.M. Pei & Associates后来更名为贝聿铭及伙伴I.M. Pei & Partners，后来又更名为贝-科布-弗利德[Pei Cobb and Freed]。）
In 1979, the year after the National Gallery was completed, Pei received the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Architects, its highest honor.
1979年，也就是国家美术馆落成后的第二年，贝聿铭获得了美国建筑师协会(American Institute of Architects)金奖，这是该协会的最高荣誉。
At the same time that he was receiving plaudits in Washington, however, Pei was recovering from one of the most devastating setbacks any architect of his generation had faced anywhere: the nearly total failure of one of his most conspicuous projects, the 700-foot-tall John Hancock Tower at Copley Square in Boston.
在华盛顿得到美誉的同时，贝聿铭也在从他那一代建筑师所面临的最惨痛挫折中恢复过来：他最引人注目的项目之一――波士顿科普利广场700英尺高的约翰・汉考克大厦(John Hancock Tower)是个彻头彻尾的失败。
A thin, elegant slab of bluish glass designed by his partner Henry Cobb, it was nearing completion in 1973 when sheets of glass began popping out of its facade. They were quickly replaced with plywood, but before the source of the problem could be detected, nearly a third of the glass had fallen out, creating both a professional embarrassment and an enormous legal liability for Pei and his firm.
The fault, experts believed, was not in the Pei design but in the glass itself: The Hancock Tower was one of the first high-rise buildings to use a new type of reflective, double-paned glass.
The building ultimately won numerous awards, including the American Institute of Architects' 25-Year Award.
Ieoh Ming Pei was born in Canton (now Guangzhou) on April 26, 1917, the son of Tsuyee Pei, one of China's leading bankers.
He was brought up in a well-to-do household that was steeped in both Chinese tradition ― he spent summers in a country village, where his father's family had lived for more than 500 years, learning the rites of ancestor worship ― and Western sophistication.
He decided to attend college in the United States. He received a bachelor of architecture degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1940.
后来他决定去美国上大学。1940年，他获得麻省理工学院(Massachusetts Institute of Technology)建筑学学士学位。
While he was at MIT, Pei met another Chinese national, Eileen Loo, who had come to the United States in 1938 to study art at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. The two married as soon as she graduated, in 1942. Eileen Pei began graduate work in landscape architecture at Harvard while her husband worked toward his advanced architecture degree, which he received in 1946.
Pei never played down his connections to China. His children were all given Chinese names, and when he won the Pritzker Prize in 1983, widely viewed as the highest honor a living architect can receive, he used the $100,000 award to establish a scholarship fund for Chinese architecture students.
His eldest son, T'ing Chung, an urban planner, died in 2003. His wife of 72 years, Eileen, died in 2014. In addition to his son Li Chung, who is known as Sandi, he is survived by another son, Chien Chung, also an architect, who is known as Didi; his daughter, Liane; and grandchildren and great-grandchildren.