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Noted architect Oscar Niemeyer dies, aged 104

Published on Dec 6, 2012 8:53 AM
 
Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer attends the opening of the Oscar Niemeyer foundation, a building designed by himself, and a ceremony to celebrate his 103rd birthday in Niteroi, in this Dec 15, 2010 file photo. Mr Niemeyer, a towering patriarch of modern architecture who shaped the look of modern Brazil and whose inventive, curved designs left their mark on cities worldwide, died late on Wednesday. He was 104. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Mr Oscar Niemeyer, a towering patriarch of modern architecture who shaped the look of modern Brazil and whose inventive, curved designs left their mark on cities worldwide, died late on Wednesday. He was 104.

Mr Niemeyer had been battling kidney ailments and pneumonia for nearly a month in a Rio de Janeiro hospital. His death was confirmed by a hospital spokesperson.

Starting in the 1930s, Mr Niemeyer's career spanned nine decades. His distinctive glass and white-concrete buildings include such landmarks as the United Nations Secretariat in New York, the Communist Party headquarters in Paris and the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Brasilia.

He won the 1988 Pritzker Architecture Prize, considered the "Nobel Prize of Architecture" for the Brasilia cathedral. Its "Crown of Thorns" cupola fills the church with light and a sense of soaring grandeur despite the fact that most of the building is underground.

 
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