Jean-Louis Cohen, renowned art historian and Golden Trezzini juror in 2020—2021, dies at 74.
On August, 7, French architect and architectural historian Jean-Louis Cohen died at the age of 74. He was an expert in 20th-century architecture and urban planning, as well as cultural interaction between Russia and the West. In 2020—2021, he was involved in the Golden Trezzini Awards online activities as the International Jury member.
Born in Paris in 1949, Cohen studied architecture at the École Spéciale d'Architecture and at the Unité Pédagogique n° 6 in Paris, graduating in 1973, and has received a PhD in art history from the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in 1985, and a habilitation from the same institution in 1992.
Since 1994 he had been the Sheldon H. Solow Professor in the History of Architecture at New York University Institute of Fine Arts. In 2013 the Collège de France in Paris appointed him for three years to hold a chair devoted to Architecture and Urban Form. In 2021 he was appointed the inaugural Penelope Visiting Professor in Architectural History at the University of Sydney, Australia.
In 1998 Cohen was appointed to develop the Cité de l'Architecture et du Patrimoine in Paris which opened in 2007. He curated the French pavilion at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale, for which he received the special mention of the Jury.
Cohen was made a Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2001.
The research activity of Jean-Louis Cohen was focused mainly on 20th-century architecture and urban planning. The question of cultural transfer in architecture, urban design, and visual culture is central in his work, and has been discussed in reference to the relationships between Italy, Germany, and France and, with particular emphasis, in reference to the interaction between Russia and the West.
He has been a curator for numerous exhibitions including, for example, “The Lost Vanguard”, at the Museum of Modern Art (2007); “Paris-Moscou” (1979) and the centennial show “L'aventure Le Corbusier” (1987), both at the Centre Georges Pompidou, or “Le Corbusier, tainy tvorchestva,” at the Pushkin Museum in Moscow (2012), and the Moderna Museet in Stockholm (2013).
For us at the Golden Trezzini Organizing Committee, Jean-Louis Cohen was an example of a brilliant researcher with true passion for outstanding architecture of past as well as present times. We were and will be grateful to him for his involvement and belief that discovering and supporting decent architectural designs mean a lot for today’s world.