Hadid’s approach to architecture was innovative and rebellious, yet sophisticated and grand. Using parameters as an intentional tool for design, she sought not to invent form, but to find it in the nature of logic and physics.
Parametricism, the term that came to describe her design approach, includes the idea architecture’s construction process can become ornamental. It’s the art of stylizing logic, of allowing materials to become drivers of form and articulation. What should a book that carries these ideas look like?
My first instinct was to try to find a way to subvert the common format of the classic coffee table book; it seemed to me that information on Zaha’s innovative approach deserved an innovative vessel. The wilder my ideas got, however, the more I realized that the desired result could be achieved not through adding more—more die cuts, materials, tricks— but also through removing things, or in other words letting the material nature of the book speak for itself.
Bare in superfluous ornament, the proposed design emphasizes the book’s construction through a smythe-sewn bind—a binding technique that leaves a book’s spine bear, revealing the signatures at its foundation. In this case, each of the signatures carries the name of one of Hadid’s constructions, ordered by year of inauguration.
Inside the book, an infographic (below) shows the same information, but this time mapped onto the page according to each building’s location in the world. Blended together, the resulting lines create a shape that recalls some of Hadid’s ideas.
The rest of the content is organized according to a grid based on the cover's typographic design.