50 Famous Architects in the World of all Time

Right from the time of Imhotep to the times of Gehry, the world has seen many famous architects, RTF here has tried to list down some of these icons with no intention to rank their work since each one of them has their own styles and are known for their individuality. We’ve included the Educational Institutes, notable works, and a quote by all of these famous architects.

50. Adolf Loos | Famous Architects in the World

Education: the Dresden University of Technology (Drop out) Notable works: Steiner House, Looshaus, Villa Müller Quote: “Supply and demand regulate architectural form” Adolf First, in the list of famous architects, Loos was an architect who grew up in Germany and was the leading critic of the use of decoration and style in architecture, which he argued needed to be functional which we still have in his writing “Ornamentation and Crime”. Loos viewed the use of design and ornament as childish and backward. He frequently railed against the idea that buildings should be made visually pleasing in anyways, which did not add to the function of the structure.

Adolf Loos – Villa Muller

Adolf Loos – Looshaus, Austria

49. Álvaro Siza | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Fine Arts of the University of Porto Notable works: Iberê Camargo Foundation, the Serralves, New Orleans building. Quote: “Architects don’t invent anything, they just transform reality” Álvaro Siza is a Portuguese architect and architectural educator. In his childhood, he wanted to become a sculptor which is reflected in his architecture practice. His most buildings are a representation of sculptural works that have been described as “poetic modernism.” This sculptural architecture he knits into its context, connecting his buildings with the site and the culture masterfully.

Alvaro Siza – The Serralves, Portugal

Alvaro Siza – Iberê Camargo Foundation, Brazil

48. Alvar Alto

Education: Helsinki University of Technology and University of Jyvaskyla Notable works: Viipuri Library, Villa Mairea, Baker House, Finlandia Hall Quote: Architecture belongs to culture, not to civilization.” Our next famous architect, Alvar Alto was part of the Modern Movement of Architecture, but he developed his own style, based on modernist architecture combined with the usage of local materials and his own personal expression. He practiced an organic modern style that would equip the functionality of the building during his mature years. Although Aalto was from a younger generation, he is considered one of the master architects of Modern Architecture, along with Le Corbusier, Mies Van Der Rohe, and Walter Gropius.

Alvar Alto – Villa Mairea, Finland

Alvar Alto – The Baker House, Massachusetts

47. Antoine Predock | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Columbia University Notable works: Robert Hoag Rawlings Public Library, Trinity River Audubon Center, Canadian Museum for Human Rights Quote: “Architecture is a ride – a physical ride and an intellectual ride.” Antoine Predock is an American architect based in New Mexico. He is the principal of Antoine Predock Architect PC. His buildings appear to have been organically grown out of the earth. He actually begins his building designs in clay and then bonds his creations with the modern world of computer design. Many of Predock’s designs have clearly been influenced by his time in New Mexico. Experts have said he brings a sense of connection and force to his work, with spiritual interaction, movement, the natural environment, and technology.

Antonie Pedrock – Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Canada

Antonie Pedrock – Robert Hoag Rawlings Public Library, Colorado

46. Antoni Gaudí | Famous Architects in the World

Education: ETSAB Barcelona School of Architecture

Notable works: Sagrada Família, Casa Milà, Casa Batlló Quote: “There are no straight lines or sharp corners in nature. Therefore, buildings must have no straight lines or sharp corners.”

One of the great and most famous architects in the world, Antoni Gaudí’s works reflect an individualized and distinctive style. His work was influenced by his passions in life: architecture, nature, and religion. He considered every detail of his creations and integrated into his architecture such crafts as ceramics, stained glass, wrought ironwork forging, and carpentry. He also introduced new techniques in the treatment of materials, such as trencadís(broken tile mosaics) which used waste ceramic pieces.

Antoni Gaudi – Sagrada Família, Spain

Antoni Gaudi – Casa Batlló, Spain

45. Arne Jacobsen

Education: RoyalDanish Academy of Fine Arts Notable works: Bellavista residential complex, Bellevue Teatret, Stelling House, Soholm Row Houses Quote: Clearly, if a building is not functionally and technically in order, then it isn’t architecture either, it’s just a building” Arne Jacobsen is noted for his sense of proportion. He is remembered for his contribution to architectural Functionalism as well as for the worldwide success he enjoyed with simple but effective chair designs.

Arne Jacobsen – Bellavista residential complex, Denmark

Arne Jacobsen – Bellevue Teatret, Denmark

44. Ben Van Berkel | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Rietveld Academy, then diploma from the Architectural Association in London Notable works: Moebius House, Erasmus Bridge, Mercedes-Benz Museum

Quote: Architecture falls between art and airports. Its pragmatic-it helps you get from point A to point B. But it also works as art. It makes you think twice. It inspires you. It brings you back to yourself.”

World-famous architect, Ben Van Berkel is a Dutch architect. He is the founder and principal architect of the architectural practice UNStudio, they present themselves as a network of specialists in architecture, urban development, and infrastructure. Ben van Berkel attempts to develop the broadest possible vision of the construction site, analyzing the issues involved and the potential for use and development of the land. He places conceptual discipline and social formations above technology.

Ben Van Berkel – Erasmus Bridge, Netherlands

Ben Van Berkel – Moebius House, Amsterdam

43. Bernard Tschumi

Education: ETH Zurich Notable works: Parc de la Villette, Acropolis Museum Athens, Blue Condominium

Quote: Architecture is not so much a knowledge of form, but a form of knowledge.”

Tschumi has argued that there is no fixed relationship between architectural form and the events that take place within it. He emphasized the establishment of a non-hierarchical architecture to achieve balance through programmatic and spatial devices. His designs strive to integrate into the environment they encompass in a way that they work functionally and visually portray his design intentions and not in a way that they blend in the surroundings. Tschumi’s style of design is often an integration of linear and curvature forms in his architecture.

Bernard Tschumi – Blue Condominium, New York

Bernard Tschumi – Acropolis Museum Athens, Greece

42. Bjarke Ingels | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Notable works: VM Houses, Mountain dwellings, 8 House, Amager Bakke

Quote: For me, architecture is the means, not the end. It’s a means of making different life forms possible.” The next famous architect, Bjarke Ingels is a Danish Architect, founder, and creative partner of Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), widely known for buildings that defy convention while incorporating sustainable development principles and bold sociological concepts.

Bjarke Ingels – Mountain Dwellings, Denmark

Bjarke Ingels – VM Houses, Denmark

41. César Pelli | Famous Architecture

Education: Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Master of Science in Architectural Degree from University of Illinois School of Architecture Notable works: Porta Nuova Garibaldi Complex, Petronas Towers, Pelli’s Torre de Cristal Quote: The desire to reach for the sky runs very deep in the human psyche.” César Pelli came to recognize the need to steer away from the architectural fixation on creating an individual style and instead be adaptive, altering his designs depending on the place and purpose at hand. His aim was to create a new type of architecture that responded to new functions, materials, technologies, and social systems of the time. Pelli was known for the lightweight, almost tent-like appearance of his buildings, which were often surfaced in glass or a thin stone veneer. His projects displayed a fascination with abstract, crystalline glass shapes shot through with lines of colored stone or metal.

Cesar Pelli – Porta Nuova Garibaldi Complex, Italy

Cesar Pelli – Petronas Towers, Malaysia

40. Charles Correa | Famous Architects in the World

Education: the University of Michigan, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Notable works: Jawahar Kala Kendra, National Crafts Museum, Bharat Bhavan

Quote: Market forces do not make cities, they destroy them”

Charles Correa, widely known for his works in contemporary architecture, played an important and vital role in the development of architecture in India. Correa’s early work combined traditional architectural values—as embodied in the bungalow with its veranda and the open-air courtyard—with the Modernist use of materials exemplified by figures such as Le Corbusier, Louis I. Kahn. In particular, Correa was influenced by Le Corbusier’s use of striking concrete forms. The importance of the site was a constant in Correa’s approach. In his works, he tries to complement the Indian landscape.

Charles Correa – Jawahar Kala Kendra, India

Charles Correa – Bharat Bhavan, India

39. Daniel Libeskind

Education: Cooper Union for architecture Notable works: Grand Canal Theatre in Dublin, Imperial War Museum North in England, Michael Lee-Chin Crystal in Toronto Quote: “To provide meaningful architecture is not to parody history but to articulate it. Our next famous architect, Daniel Libeskind is renowned for his ability to evoke cultural memory in buildings. Inspired deeply by music, philosophy, literature, and poetry, he aims to create architecture that is resonant, unique, and sustainable. His work is often described as Deconstructivist, a style of postmodern architecture characterized by fragmentation and distortion.

Daniel Libeskind – Imperial War Museum, England

Daniel Libeskind – Grand Canal Theatre, Dublin

38. David Childs

Education: Yale School of Architecture Notable works: Bertelsmann Building, Worldwide Plaza, Time Warner Center, 7 World Trade Center Quote: “It was a strange building because it had to go ahead right away. It didn’t wait for any approvals or master plans.” Another famous architect, David Magie Childs is an American architect and chairman emeritus of the architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill. He is still a consulting partner at the firm and he is currently responsible for the redesign and construction of the new One World Trade Center in New York.

David Childs – Time Warner Center, New York

David Childs – Bertelsmann Building, New york

37. Eero Saarinen | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Académie de la Grande Chaumière, Yale School of Architecture Notable works: Kleinhans Music Hall, Gateway Arch, Christ Church Lutheran, TWA Terminal Quote: Function influence but does not dictate form” Eero Saarinen’s work was a series of dramatically different designs that displayed a richer and more diverse vocabulary. He had to be included in the famous architect’s list as he introduced sculptural forms that were rich in architectural character and visual drama in contrast to the existing modern architecture. Saarinen’s keen grasp of history and culture helped him understand the context in which his buildings would be inserted, and the strong connections that they make with their surroundings point to why nearly all of his major buildings have survived nearly unchanged to the present day.

Eero Saarinen – TWA Terminal, New york

Eero Saarinen – Gateway Arch, Missouri

36. Frank Gehry

Education: Bachelor of Architecture from University of Southern California; Graduate studies in City planning from Harvard school of Design but left before completion Notable works: The Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Der Neue Zollhof in Düsseldorf and the Marqués de Riscal Vineyard Hotel in Elciego Quote: “I don’t want to do architecture that’s dry and dull” Frank Owen Gehry is a Canadian architect born in Canada, currently a United States resident based in Los Angeles. His Architectural creations are the most distinctive, and innovative and deconstructive forms are iconic phenomena around in this century in this architecture world. His ability to create spaces that manipulate forms and surfaces is his most notable feats and his unique uses of materials almost defy all logic in how they work together.

Frank Gehry – The Walt Disney Concert Hall, California

Frank Gehry – Marqués de Riscal Vineyard Hotel, Spain

35. Frank Lloyd Wright | Famous Architects in the World

Education: University of Wisconsin–Madison(drop out) Notable Works: Guggenheim Museum New York City, Falling water, Imperial hotel Quote: “The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own, we have no soul of our own civilization.” Wright believed in designing structures that were in harmony with humanity and its environment, a philosophy he called organic architecture. Wright also helped create the open floor plan—designing rooms that flow and open out into each other. His appreciation of nature is apparent in his work and most of his works were inspired by nature and how to settle his creation with harmony in the environment.

Frank L Wright – Falling water, Pennsylvania

Frank L Wright – Guggenheim Museum, New York

34. Harry Seidler

Education: the University of Manitoba, Harvard Graduate school of Design Notable works: Rose Seidler House, Blues Point Tower, Australia Square Tower, Harry and Penelope Seidler House, Hong Kong Club Building

Quote: Architecture is not an inspirational business, it’s a rational procedure to do sensible and hopefully beautiful things; that’s all. Harry Seidler, was an Austrian-born Australian architect who is considered to be one of the leading exponents of Modernism’s methodology in Australia. His work was greatly influenced by his four mentors: Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, Josef Albers, and Oscar Niemeyer. The form of Seidler’s work changed as building technology changed: from his timber houses in the 1950s, to reinforced concrete houses and buildings in the 1960–1980s and the development of curves (in plan shapes) with advances in concrete technology in the 1980s and later, as well as developments in steel technology that allowed for curved roofs in the 1990s onwards.

Harry Seidler – Rose Seidler House, Australia

Harry Seidler – Blues Point Tower, Australia

33. I M Pei | Famous Architecture

Education: Graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and then studied at Harvard Graduate School of Design. Notable works: John F Kennedy Library, Louvre Pyramid, Museum of Islamic Art

Quote: “A lasting architecture has to have roots.”

Ieoh Ming Pei was a Chinese American Architect. Pei’s style was described as thoroughly modernist, with significant cubist themes. He was known for combining traditional architectural principles with progressive designs based on simple geometric patterns—circles, squares, and triangles are common elements of his work in both plan and elevation.

IM Pei – Museum of Islamic Art, Doha

IM Pei – Louvre Pyramid, Paris

32. Jean Nouvel | Famous Architects in the World

Education: École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts Notable works: Louvre Abu Dhabi, Agbar Tower, One central Park, National Museum of Qatar Quote: Each new situation requires a new architecture.”

While many architects develop a unique style that allows their buildings to be instantly identified, Jean Nouvel continually defies easy classification. He doesn’t limit himself to one style. His projects are experimental and boundary-pushing designs, which frequently combine high-tech advancements and brilliant colors.

Jean Nouvel – Louvre Abu Dhabi, UAE

Jean Nouvel – Agbar Tower, Spain

31. Kenzo Tange

Education: University of Tokyo Notable works: Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, Plan for Skopje, Tokyo Olympic arenas, St Mary’s Cathedral

Quote: “Designs of purely arbitrary nature cannot be expected to last long.”

Kenzo Tange was the lead architect in the movement of modernism in Japan. Tange didn’t disregard the traditional architecture of Japan though, and he often made a point to incorporate traditional and modern together in his designs. He considered his design of “transitional architectural expressions”.

Kenzo Tange – Tokyo Olympic arenas, Japan

Kenzo Tange – St Mary’s Cathedral, Japan

30. Louis Kahn | Famous Architects in the World

Education: University of Pennsylvania School of Fine Arts. Notable works: Jatiyo Sangshad Bhaban, Yale University Art Gallery, Salk Institute, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Phillips Exeter Academy Library, Kimbell Art Museum

Quote: “Architecture is the reaching out for the truth.” Kahn’s buildings share a common solidity and heaviness in contrast to other architect contemporaries where they prefer light and airy structures by using glass and metals. Kahn used stone and concrete to make monumental buildings. Many of his structures look more ancient than modern. He paid attention to the look and feel of the materials he used, the use of proper sunlight. He liked natural light to enter his buildings through interesting kinds of windows and openings. He used brick and concrete in new and special ways. Kahn’s work can also be identified by his creative use of geometric shapes. Many of his buildings use squares, circles, and triangles.

Louis Kahn – Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, India

Louis Kahn – Jatiyo Sangshad Bhaban, Bangladesh

29. Louis Sullivan | Famous Architecture

Education: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (drop out) Notable works: Prudential Building, Sullivan Centre, Auditorium Building

Quote: Form follows function.”

He was known as Chicago’s “Father of Skyscrapers. Sullivan is best known for his influence on the modernists that followed him. Though he is known for his beautiful use of ornament, his true innovation came in the way he adapted previous ornamental styles to the newly emerging tall buildings of the late 19th century, using it to emphasize a building’s verticality. It is this principle that led to his famous tenet of “form follows function”.

Louis Sullivan – Sullivan Centre, Illinois

Louis Sullivan – Prudential Building, New york

28. Le Corbusier

Education: Didn’t receive any formal education Notable works: Esprit Nouveau Pavilion in Paris, the chapel of Notre Dame du Haut in Ronchamp, Villa Savoye in Paris, City of Chandigarh Quote: “To create architecture is to put in order. Put what in order? Function and objects.” Le Corbusier was a Swiss-French architect, designer, painter, urban planner, writer, and one of the pioneers of what is now called modern architecture. Corbusier theorized five points that supported his modernist style of architecture: pilotis, free façade, open floor plan, open views, and roof garden. Many of Corbusier’s designs were airy and open, connecting the visitor to nature and creating a bridge between the structure and the outside world.

Le Corbusier – Villa Savoye

Le Corbusier – Esprit Nouveau Pavilion, Paris

27. Marcel Breuer | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Bauhaus Notable works: IBM La Gaude, Hooper House (Baltimore County, Maryland), Murray D. Lincoln Campus Center

Quote: “I am as much interested in the smallest detail as in the whole structure.”

Marcel Breuer was an architect and designer, one of the most influential architects in the modern movement. He was concerned with applying new forms and uses to newly developed technology and materials in order to create an art expressive of an industrial age.

Marcel Breuer – IBM, La Gaude

Marcel Breuer – Hooper House, Maryland

26. Michael Graves

Education: Bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati, Masters degree from Harvard graduate school of Design Notable works: Portland Building, Humana Building, Denver Public Library

Quote: I don’t believe in morality in architecture.”

Michael Graves practiced modern architecture. His early architecture includes white geometric volumes composed of clean, sparse lines with no ornamentation. Some of his designs were famous for their hulking masses and for his highly personal Cubist interpretations. Though sometimes perceived as awkward, these structures were acclaimed for their powerful and energetic presence.

Michael Graves – Portland Building, Oregon

Michael Graves – Denver Public Library, Colorado

25. Mies Van Der Rohe | Famous Architects in the World

Education: No formal education Notable works: Farnsworth House, Seagram Building, Chicago Federal Complex

Quote: “Less is more.” World-famous architect, Mies established his own particular architectural style in the modern era. His style was based on extreme clarity and simplicity. His buildings made use of modern materials such as industrial steel and plate glass to define interior spaces. Mies strove toward an architecture with a minimal framework of structural order balanced against the implied freedom of unobstructed free-flowing open space. He called his buildings “skin and bones” architecture. His creative approach in architectural design led him to become one of the pioneers of a modern Architect.

Mies Van Der Rohe – Farnsworth House, Plano

Mies Van Der Rohe – Seagram Building, New York

24. Moshe Safdie

Education: McGill University Notable works: Habitat 67, Virasat-e-Khalsa, Marina Bay Sands, National Gallery of Canada

Quote: “There is a profound ethic to architecture which is different from the other arts.”

Moshe Safdie is an Israeli-Canadian architect, urban designer, educator, theorist, and author. His works are known for their dramatic curves, arrays of geometric patterns, use of windows, and key placement of open and green spaces. His writings and designs stress the need to create meaningful, vital, and inclusive spaces that enhance the community, with special attention to the essence of a particular locale, geography, and culture.

Moshe Virasat-e-Khalsa, India

Moshe Safdie – Habitat 67, Quebec

23. Norman Foster

Education: Graduation degree from Manchester School of Architecture and Masters from Yale School of Architecture Notable works: 30 St Mary Axe in London, Willis Faber and Dumas Headquarters in Ipswich, and Wembley Stadium in London

Quote: As an architect, you design for the present, with an awareness of the past, for a future which is essentially unknown.”

The next famous architect, Sir Norman Foster’s work is often sleek, modern, and high-tech that creates cinematic backdrops to everyday life. His firm, Foster + Partners, has projects all over the world and they continue to create progressive works of High-Tech architecture incorporating Sustainable Design.

Norman Foster – 30 St Mary Axe, London

Norman Foster – Willis Faber and Dumas Headquarters, Ipswich

22. Oscar Niemeyer | Famous Architects in the World

Education: Graduated from Escola Nacional de Belas Artes at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro in 1934 Notable Works: Contemporary Art Museum in Rio de Janerio, Natal City Park, and the Ravello Auditorium. Quote: “Form follows beauty” Oscar Niemeyer was a Brazilian architect specializing in modern architecture. He was instrumental in reshaping Brazil’s identity in the field of architecture. In addition to making important contributions to his country, he was also a pioneer in the use of reinforced concrete used solely for aesthetic impact. He was criticized as well as celebrated for being a “sculptor of monuments”. Niemeyer was most famous for his use of abstract forms and curves. He wrote in his memoir-“I am not attracted to straight angles or to the straight line, hard and inflexible, created by man. I am attracted to free-flowing, sensual curves”. He was influenced by Le Corbusier Architecture style but that didn’t empower his vision.