When I was growing up, I occasionally heard about what a genius I.M. Pei was. Yet whenever I saw pictures of his buildings, I could never figure out why.
Pei is probably most famous for this glass structure which he designed to be placed in the center of the Louvre, in Paris:
Pei evidently said that a pyramid structure was "most compatible" with the structure of the Louvre. That might have been true in Giza. But to me, but the Louvre is improved by a pyramid the same way that the Louvre's most famous painting, the Mona Lisa, would be improved by a big zit.
Another of Pei's famous designs was the Luce Memorial Chapel in Taiwan:
It does have a vague resemblance to the top of a traditional church. But it bears a closer resemblance to a Dairy Queen with wings. Or perhaps a Swiss ski chalet after a nuclear meltdown.
This is Pei's National Center for Atmospheric Research, in Boulder, Colorado:
Pei evidently said he wanted the building to "look as if it were carved out of the mountain." Well, judging from the scarcity of windows (they would have interfered with his Cubist design), it probably is as dark as a cave in there.
According to Wikipedia, Pei considered the John F. Kennedy Library "the most important commission" of his life:
It is amazing how closely it resembles a terminal at JFK (the airport, not the library).
Pei also designed the Bank of China Tower in Hong Kong:
According to Wiki, Pei felt that it "needed to reflect the aspirations of the Chinese people." All tall buildings bespeak a certain ambition; but if you look closely, you can see that this one at least reflected the building next door.
This is the Pei-designed Dallas City Hall:
Pei wanted this structure to "convey an image of the people." If this building is an image of a person, then it's one who can't keep his balance; perhaps Pei was making a sly comment about Texans' drinking habits.
Modern architects speak a high-falutin' language which I don't seem to understand.