Tonight’s BRIT Awards 2017 will present winning artists with the statue designed by Zaha Hadid. BRITs Chairman Jason Iley initially reached out to Hadid in early 2016. Iley wanted to create something modern and culturally relevant for The BRITs. He met Hadid at her party celebrating the winning of the 2016 Royal Gold Medal. The BRIT statue design project has been led by Maha Kutay, Director at Zaha Hadid Design, and Niamh Byrne (on behalf of The BRIT Awards).
Recalling this meeting and a subsequent one Iley said, “The party was for her family, friends and many renowned architects. This was a really big night for her and she was still prepared to talk about The BRIT Award and she was really excited about it. A couple of weeks later, as a guest of Sony at The BRIT Awards, she said ‘I know exactly how I want to do it! I have a vision for it!’ Which was amazing as she was one of the most brilliant, forward thinking architects in the world.” Explaining his reasons for approaching Hadid, Iley continued, “Their work is innovative, original and recognises diversity in culture. It has much in common with music. Hadid was the perfect choice for progressing the Award into the future.”
Speaking about the design Maha Kutay said: “Zaha was truly excited to be doing this. Her vision was, being an architect, to focus our efforts more on the 3D element, as the statue had previously been used as a canvas for artists to paint on for the last few years. The design expresses our unwavering optimism for the future and a break from the norm. The biggest challenge was to create something new within certain guidelines, yet achieving a result recognisable to the public.”
A family of 5 statues make up the 2017 BRIT Awards statues. Kutay explains the family of five idea, “the concept represents diversity, the family is connected by a wave of transition, they are different yet connected.” A huge music fan, Hadid had cited a range of artists including Drake, Bryan Ferry, The Beatles, Sam Smith and Adele amongst her favourites in an interview with Desert Island Discs shortly before she passed away.
In 2015 she partnered with Pharrell Williams to collaborate on a design for a pair of trainers. At the time Williams said, “I’m a huge fan of Zaha’s. I would venture to say that she’s one of the most talented architects of our time, and of history in my opinion.” The 2017 statue both honours and adds to Hadid’s remarkable legacy. The BRIT Awards 2017 at London’s O2 Arena will be broadcast live tonight on ITV at 7:30pm, and streamed on YouTube. Source and images, Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects.