Koolhaas, Rem, 1944-, Dutch architect, b. Rotterdam. He began his career as a journalist and screenwriter, moving to London in the late 1960s to study architecture. Koolhaas is widely viewed as the most intellectually challenging, audacious, and influential architectural thinker of his generation; until the 1990s he was primarily known as a theorist. He founded (1975) and heads the Rotterdam-based Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA). His cutting-edge work defies categorization; it is innovatively functional and often uses inexpensive everyday materials. Among his completed commissions are the Netherlands Dance Theater, The Hague (1987); the vast Euralille urban complex, Lille, France (1994); the Dutch Embassy, Berlin (2003); the McCormick Tribune Campus Center, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago (2003); and the Casa de Música, Oporto, Portugal (2005). His Central Library in Seattle (2004), featuring an irregularly angled and cantilevered exterior, glass and steel skin, spiral of interior bookshelves, and soaring reading room, is probably his most highly acclaimed project. Koolhaas is the author of Delirious New York (1978, repr. 1994), about the city's architecture and density; S, M, L, XL (1994), about OMA's projects; and several other books. He received the Pritzker Prize in 2000.

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