Eberhard Zeidler, 1926 – 2022January 08, 2022
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Eberhard Zeidler.
Eb believed that architecture was a stage for life. He understood that buildings and cities are foremost places for people, therefore life should be expressed within them. Eb approached his work with a strong technical ability combined with humanist sensibilities. His work balanced practical form while recognizing the emotional and aspirational needs of the people that occupied their spaces. His designs have left a distinguished mark on the Canadian architectural landscape, with enormously successful landmarks such as the Eaton Centre and Ontario Place in Toronto, the McMaster Health Sciences Centre in Hamilton, and Canada Place in Vancouver.
Eb’s prolific career, philosophical views on city building and pioneering design inspire architects all over the world. In healthcare, he transformed the notion of the machine hospital into a healing environment, believing that the hospital itself serves the emotional needs of its patients, staff and visitors. He took labyrinth corridors and transformed them into an open system with natural light, green spaces and settings for communal gathering. His design of the Eaton Centre was conceived not as a mall but an interior street, integrating it as part of the city fabric. Eb applied these same sensibilities to all of his work.
Eb’s legacy lives on in the over 1,000 buildings he designed, in his essays and personal diaries found within his book Buildings Cities Life, and the strong inspiration he gave to a myriad of city builders, architects, artists and thinkers alike.
Statement from Vaidila Banelis, Senior Partner at Zeidler:
“I first met Eb in my final year at architecture school at the University of Toronto. My father, an architect who had previously worked with Eb, recommended that I join his design studio. That year, Eb taught me to not only focus on the strong conceptual design, emphasized in the Faculty of Architecture, but also to highlight technical solutions. He showed me how to ensure the survival of a strong concept through the development and construction process. Eb offered me a position after graduation. Since that time, over 30 years ago, I have enjoyed his tremendous support and encouragement, and am proud to represent the great design firm he founded.”
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