Zaha Hadid's building project in Baku wins Design of the Year
Awarded by the British Design Museum
Legendary Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid is the first woman to win the top prize in the prestigious competition, now in its seventh year. No stranger to Baku, Zaha created The Heydar Aliyev Centre with her signature elaborate curves and undulations.
However, according to the British newspaper The Independent, the museum has undergone sharp criticism for the decision. Several human rights groups have expressed outrage at the promotion and draw attention to the building, bearing the name of the former repressive leader.
Previous winners include the London 2012 Olympic Torch, the Plumen light bulb, and the British government's Gov.uk website, with the overall winner being chosen by a panel of experts from more than 70 nominated designs in the categories of architecture, digital, fashion, furniture, graphics, product and transport.
Hadid's Heydar Aliyev Centre is the first architectural design to win the award, and this year Miuccia Prada took the Fashion prize for her Spring/Summer 14 Prada collection.
Chair of the jury Ekow Eshun, a writer, journalist and broadcaster, said of Hadid's win: "It's beautiful, it's inspiring, it's the clear vision of a singular genius and we thought it was a remarkable piece of work."
Zaha Hadid and Leyla Aliyeva, the first daughter of the President of Azerbaijan
Toby Stephens and Anna Louise Ploughman