Louis Kahn (1901-1974) may not have as many built works as his contemporaries Le Corbusier or Mies van der Rohe but the legacy he left stands just as tall and reaches just as far. Born in Estonia but raised in the United States, the modern master studied architecture at the University of Pennsylvania, where he himself later taught, under the guidance of architect Paul Cret, for whom he later worked. Kahn took a position teaching at Yale University, after turning down an offer from Harvard. Kahn's first major commission was the Yale Art Gallery in 1951, which began the first of a list of monumental buildings in concrete that paid special attention to how light changes within a building and creates experiences of architecture. The work was followed up with the famous Jonas Salk Institue for Biological Studies in San Diego, the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, and the National Assembly Building in Bangladesh. Kahn died in a men's bathroom in New York City's Pennsylvania Station of a heart attack in 1974 on a trip back from India.

Light Matters
When asking people what matters most in their lives, they usually offer up values like friendship, health and happiness.
Design Icon: 9 Buildings by Louis Kahn
In crafting classic forms with presence and weight, this American architect recalled a more monumental era.