Jean Nouvel was born in Fumel, France, in 1945.
His many titles and distinctions include the French Gran Prix National de l’Architecture (1987), the Aga Khan Prize (for work on the Arab World Institute in Paris), the Gold Medals of the French Academy of Architecture and of the Royal Institute of British Architects, the Borromini Prize (awarded in 2001 for the Lucerne Culture and Congress Centre), the Praemium Imperiale prize, created by the Japan Art Association (2001) and the Pritzker Prize (The Nobel Prize of Architecture) in 2008.
His greatest architectural achievements include the Arab World Institute in Paris, the Opera House in Lyon, the Cartier Foundation in Paris, Galeries Lafayette in Berlin, the Culture and Conference Centre in Lucerne, the Conference Centre in Tours, the Andel commercial and office complex in Prague, the Law Courts in Nantes and, most recently, the Dentsu Tower in Tokyo, the Museum of Archaeology in Périgueux and the technology and research centre in Wismar. His latest projects include the offices for Aguas de Barcelona, the UEC offices in Frankfurt, the headquarters of the Richemont Corporation in Genoa, the Reina Sofía Museum in Madrid, the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, and Copenhagen’s Concert Hall.
When designing the project for the Puerta America, Nouvel felt it was important “to make links between freedom and pleasure”. The concept this French architect wanted to convey in his work for the Puerta America hotel is “the crossroads between art and architecture, allowing people to live some exceptional moments, and creating small worlds for them to enjoy”.
The French architect was commissioned to design the façade, the penthouse and Floor 12, home to the hotel’s 12 Suites. On Floor 12, he blends photography and architecture to achieve a highly provocative space ideal for “experiencing exceptional moments”
Two more names must be mentioned in the description of this project. The two photographers: Nobuyoshi Araki and Alain Fleischer. The original idea was that this floor was to be devoted to pleasure. That is why the French architect decided to use the walls to exhibit the work of these two photographers, who play with suggestive images of the human body and nature.
Araki’s photographs, which line the rooms on the west side of the hotel, stand out for their sensuality. Fleischer’s photographs, entirely abstract, have great expressive force and line the east wing. The Presidential Suites have a guest room with views of the Madrid landscape through its huge floor to ceiling glass window.
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