Frank Gehry, born in 1929 and still operating primarily out of Los Angeles, has been heralded for experimenting with different materials and helping pioneer the incorporation of unique substances and textures into iconic modern masterpieces. Gehry often uses corrugated metal, concrete, chain link fencing, titanium, glass and plywood in projects. His buildings feature sharp angles, sweeping facades and dramatic spaces filled with oversized and sensational elements. It just takes a quick survey of contemporary projects to see Gehry's influence on other architects.
Among Gehry's most influential buildings are the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, and the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. He was also responsible for the California Aerospace Museum, the Experience Music Project in Seattle, the Pritzker Pavilion in Chicago's Millennium Park and the Grand Avenue Project in Los Angeles, among many others.
Perhaps, though, Gehry's most-imitated attribute (or most coveted) is the sort of celebrity recognition he's achieved. Vanity Fair, for example, surveyed 52 architectural experts in 2005 to determine the most significant structures built in the preceding 25 years. An astonishing 28 nominated the Guggenheim Museum for the top spot [source: Vanity Fair].