Claude Parent, 1923– 2016

The French architect and father of ‘oblique’ architecture has died

Claude Parent's design for the French Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, 1970

French architect Claude Parent passed away at the age of 93. Parent was the theorician of the ‘oblique function’, a new form of architecture formulated with Paul Virilio and whose aesthetics stemmed from the World War II bunkers on the Atlantic cost, which had slipped down the sand dunes with time, and in which ‘the floor was so sloped that you couldn't tell whether what you were standing on was a slanted floor or a wall’.

A member of the Académie des Beaux-Arts since 2005, Parent has influenced many architects of the following generation through his utopian and experimental approach, notably Jean Nouvel who started his career as Parent’s collaborator. Parent left a limited but influential buildings in his wake, including the Maison de l’Iran at the Cité Universitaire in Paris, the church of Sainte-Bernadette in Nevers and the Maison Drusch in Versailles; he also designed, at the request of Rem Koolhaas, the interior of the French pavilion for the 1970 Venice Biennale, installing a series of artificial slope landscapes to house the artworks.

29 February 2016.