Bruce Graham, Architect, SOM Buildings, America, Design, Chicago, Sears Tower, Office

Bruce Graham, Skidmore Owings & Merrill

Contemporary Architecture Practice, New York, USA

SOM Architects Studio News

Bruce Graham dies at 84

1925 -2010

Architect Bruce Graham died at home in Hobe Sound, Martin County, Florida, United States. Although the architect died on Saturday news only emerged today, with a report in the Chicago Tribune. The Chicago Tribune state cause of death, according to son George, was complications from Alzheimer’s disease.

Bruce Graham
Bruce Graham photo : SOM / Stuart Rodgers Photography

Bruce Graham was famous for many designs – such as the Lever Building – but probably best known as the architect of the Sears Tower in Chicago. Both Bruce Graham and SOM established a repuation for elegant, rectilinear skyscraper designs, mostly in the United States of America but increasingly across the world. He was the most powerful Chicago architect of his generation and influenced by architect Mies van der Rohe. Skidmore Owings Merrill architects remain a global force.

John Hancock Center Sears Tower Building
Sears Tower / John Hancock Center photos courtesy of Jan Klerks

Bruce Graham was born in La Cumbre, Colombia but grew up in Puerto Rico.

Architect Alan Dunlop, of gm+ad architects commented “I’m shocked by this, particularly as I will be speaking about the Inland Steel Building tonight as a significant part of my Teasing the Grid public lecture. Early SOM, when Graham and Netsch were leading had a significant influence on my work and thoughts about architecture. Bruce Graham and Walter Netsch were heroes of mine. Netsch designed Inland Steel but it was completed by Graham, in a time when Skidmore’s were truly among the great American architect practices.”

Bruce Graham’s parents were a Canadian-born international banker and Peruvian mother. In the 1940s settled in the USA, first in the navy, then studying architecture. He joined Skidmore Owings Merrill in 1951.

Major Projects designed by Bruce Graham / SOM, chronological

Inland Steel Building, Chicago, Illinois, USA
John Hancock Center, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Sears Tower (renamed Willis Tower), Wacker Drive, Chicago, USA
Sears Tower Chicago : classic Bruce Graham building
First Wisconsin Plaza, Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Arts Hotel, Barcelona, Spain

Bruce Graham – Education

Bruce Graham received his architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1948.

Bruce Graham – Practice

Bruce Graham worked for Holabird & Roche architects but spent most of his career as an architect – and partner – at SOM. He joined the Chicago office of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in 1951 as chief of design and became a partner in 1960. Bruce Graham retired from SOM in 1989 and moved to Florida, USA.

Project designed by Bruce Graham / SOM in more detail

Arts Hotel, Port Olimpic, Barcelona, Spain
Bruce Graham of Skidmore Owings Merrill Architects (SOM Architects)
Arts Hotel Barcelona
photo © Adrian Welch
This tower (left of the image) is 154m high and uses and expressed, white-painted regular structural frame: Arts Hotel Barcelona

Bruce Graham Chicago Tribute

October 28, 2010 (Chicago) – More than 500 people gathered at the Art Institute of Chicago on October 14 to celebrate the illustrious career of the late, famed Skidmore, Owings & Merrill architect, Bruce Graham.  This tribute event featured renowned leaders in the architecture, design and construction industries who gathered to pay tribute to Graham’s legacy and extraordinary contributions to the skylines of the city of Chicago and major metropolitan areas around the world.

Honorary Bruce J. Graham Way / John Hancock Center, Chicago:
Bruce Graham Street
image : SOM | Pamela Yasuko Photography

More infomration re architect Bruce Graham online soon

Location: New York, USA

Major SOM Projects, reverse chronological

Burj Khalifa, Dubai, UAE
Burj Khalifa skyscraper
photograph : Imre Solt
Burj Khalifa : tallest building in world

Al Hamra & Firdous tower – AHF Tower, Kuwait City, Kuwait
Al Hamra & Firdous Tower
image from architects
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill – skyscraper

Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, Hong Kong
Hong Kong Convention Centre
image : SOM
Hong Kong Convention Centre Building

New York Architects Offices

Former SOM designer : Marshall Strabala

SOM architects studios based in the USA and other locations across the globe

SOM partner : Walter Netsch

Gordon Bunschaft (+ Oscar Niemeyer) : Pritzker Prize architects Winners 1988

Chicago Architecture

World Skyscrapers

American Architects

Buildings / photos for the Bruce Graham Architect page welcome

Website: Bruce Graham, SOM