Zaha Hadid remembered by Rana Hadid

By Guardian Staff

31 October 1950 – 31 March 2016
The architect's niece, also an architect, recalls her aunt's warm presence, her great drive, and the inspiration of her work

• Sonia Rykiel remembered by Agnès B

Zaha walked into our lives in the late 60s when my brother Hussein and I were five and six. She had come to Beirut to study mathematics at the American University there. Our parents had just divorced, which was a relatively rare occurrence back then. From the minute Zaha appeared, we felt loved and protected. She brought Zaha magic with her: love, laughter, fun, music, dance and close friends who remain her friends to this day. She would spend hours teaching us how to draw, how to use the colouring pencils – tilt them to colour in, how you could blunt the tip to shade in or sharpen it to have a bold, razor-sharp edge. That was long before she became an architect.

She taught us that life is best when you build bridges between people, and not walls

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Source: Zaha Hadid remembered by Rana Hadid