Are you a founder of an architecture firm? Or, maybe you’re simply a bystander who enjoys wandering city streets and marveling at human ingenuity and craftsmanship, the buildings that came from the minds of geniuses who crafted modern works of art.

If you’ve ever been to a historical mountain town such as Boulder, Colorado, you may notice the use of locally-sourced materials such as sandstone, limestone, and granite in many of their buildings.

Many visitors enjoy the not-so-little mountain town for its beauty among surrounding nature, which can be accredited to Boulder architects such as bldg.collective, who have an eye for finding a balance between nature and building design. However, this could not have been achieved without the help of history’s best architects, who have paved the way for modern building design.

This article is for you, regardless of your stance on architecture and building craftsmanship. In it, we’re discussing the best architects of all time. Answering this question is no doubt biased and not everyone will agree, which is why we’ve included five for the sake of argument.

These five only scratches the surface of who the best architect of all time is. For that, you would need a much deeper dive into the different architectural periods and the architects who shaped them.

Antoni Gaudi

Famous for his Barcelona work, Antoni Gaudi was best known for the mixture of Baroque, Gothic, Moorish, and Victorian elements. He had an ornate style, as seen in La Sagrada Familia. He also drew heavily from nature, including tree-like columns with expansive structures, similar to the sky. Gaudi’s work is perhaps the most influential to contemporary architects on this list.

Frank Lloyd Wright

Wright’s iconoclastic response to the prevailing Victorian aesthetic during the 20th century is one of the most notable and compelling achievements in architectural history. A Wisconsin native, Lloyd Wright created clean geometries that accentuated horizontal planes.

His most famous work is Falling Water, which is a residence in Bear Run, PA, and it features stacked balconies that hover above a natural waterfall in the woods.

Mies Van der Rohe

A pioneer of minimalism, this German architect pulled back many layers of his architecture to implement geometric forms. He equated form to function and his designs favored rationalism and efficiency over gimmicks as the road to aesthetic beauty. Despite his minimalist approach, he wasn’t opposed to sumptuous stonework, including marble, red onyx, and travertine in his works.

Frank Gehry

Frank Gehry is perhaps the most famous architect in the world right now. Much of this fame comes from the 1997 design for the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. He was already well-known for his style, which is seen in Disney Hall in Los Angeles and MIT’s Stata Center in Cambridge MA.

Santiago Calatrava

Santiago’s work has been described as Neofuturist. However, you could apply numerous adjectives to the eccentricity of his designs. You can see these futuristic elements at play as he includes the rib cages of robot dinosaurs.

He’s not only known for his unique imagination but he’s also known for his expensive tastes, frequently overshooting budgets. Still, as the Transit Hub for the World Trade Center suggests, his vision is contested by few.

Conclusion- Who Is the Best Architect of All Time?

Deciding who the best architect of all time is is nearly impossible. But these five juggernauts are certainly up there. Each has a distinct style. Each had a unique outlook that no one had matched before or since. And with their numerous revered designs, their contribution to architectural design cannot be denied.

Regardless of who your favorite architect is, the names on this list have shaped their times and influenced the architects that came after them with their contributions.

Evan Zhang

Evan Zhang earned his Master’s in Construction Management from the University of Michigan and has 9 years of experience in commercial and residential construction. Evan joined our website as a freelancer in 2019, providing insights into construction methodologies, building codes, and safety standards. His background includes working as a site manager and a construction consultant. Evan also worked on various urban development and infrastructure projects. Evan is a DIY enthusiast and a mentor for young professionals entering the construction field.

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