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The Most Famous

ARCHITECTS from France

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This page contains a list of the greatest French Architects. The pantheon dataset contains 424 Architects, 46 of which were born in France. This makes France the birth place of the 3rd most number of Architects behind Italy and United Kingdom.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary French Architects of all time. This list of famous French Architects is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of French Architects.

Photo of Georges-Eugène Haussmann

1. Georges-Eugène Haussmann (1809 - 1891)

With an HPI of 70.17, Georges-Eugène Haussmann is the most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 52 different languages on wikipedia.

Georges-Eugène Haussmann, commonly known as Baron Haussmann (French: [ʒɔʁʒ øʒɛn (baʁɔ̃) osman]; 27 March 1809 – 11 January 1891), was a French official who served as prefect of Seine (1853–1870), chosen by Emperor Napoleon III to carry out a massive urban renewal programme of new boulevards, parks and public works in Paris commonly referred to as Haussmann's renovation of Paris. Critics forced his resignation for extravagance, but his vision of the city still dominates central Paris.

Photo of Eugène Viollet-le-Duc

2. Eugène Viollet-le-Duc (1814 - 1879)

With an HPI of 68.64, Eugène Viollet-le-Duc is the 2nd most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 50 different languages.

Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc (French: [øʒɛn vjɔlɛ lə dyk]; 27 January 1814 – 17 September 1879) was a French architect and author, famous for his restoration of the most prominent medieval landmarks in France. His major restoration projects included Notre-Dame de Paris, the Basilica of Saint Denis, Mont Saint-Michel, Sainte-Chapelle, the medieval walls of the city of Carcassonne, and Roquetaillade castle in the Bordeaux region. His writings on decoration and on the relationship between form and function in architecture had a fundamental influence on a whole new generation of architects, including all the major Art Nouveau artists: Antoni Gaudí, Victor Horta, Hector Guimard, Henry van de Velde, Henri Sauvage and the École de Nancy, Paul Hankar, Otto Wagner, Eugène Grasset, Émile Gallé, and Hendrik Petrus Berlage. He also influenced the first modern architects, Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies van der Rohe, Auguste Perret, Louis Sullivan, and Le Corbusier, who considered Viollet-le-Duc as the father of modern architecture. The English architect William Burges admitted in his late life "We all cribbed on Viollet-le-Duc even though no one could read French".His writings also influenced John Ruskin, William Morris, and the Arts and Crafts movement. At the International Exhibition of 1862 in London, the aesthetic works of Edward Burne-Jones, Christina Rossetti, Philip Webb, William Morris, Simeon Solomon, and Edward Poynter were directly influenced from drawings in Viollet-le-Duc's Dictionary.

Photo of André Le Nôtre

3. André Le Nôtre (1613 - 1700)

With an HPI of 67.57, André Le Nôtre is the 3rd most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 46 different languages.

André Le Nôtre (French pronunciation: [ɑ̃dʁe lə notʁ]; 12 March 1613 – 15 September 1700), originally rendered as André Le Nostre, was a French landscape architect and the principal gardener of King Louis XIV of France. He was the landscape architect who designed the gardens of the Palace of Versailles; his work represents the height of the French formal garden style, or jardin à la française. Prior to working on Versailles, Le Nôtre collaborated with Louis Le Vau and Charles Le Brun on the park at Vaux-le-Vicomte. His other works include the design of gardens and parks at Bicton Park Botanical Gardens, Chantilly, Fontainebleau, Saint-Cloud and Saint-Germain. His contribution to planning was also significant: at the Tuileries he extended the westward vista, which later became the avenue of the Champs-Élysées and comprise the Axe historique.

Photo of Suger

4. Suger (1080 - 1151)

With an HPI of 67.55, Suger is the 4th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 36 different languages.

Suger (French: [syʒɛʁ]; Latin: Sugerius; c. 1081 – 13 January 1151) was a French abbot, statesman, and historian. He once lived at the court of Pope Calixtus II in Maguelonne, France. He later became abbot of Saint-Denis, and became a close confidant to King Louis VII, even becoming his regent when the king left for the Second Crusade. Together with the king, he played a part in the centralization in the growing French Kingdom. He authored writings on abbey construction and was one of the earliest patrons of Gothic architecture and is seen as widely credited with popularizing the style.

Photo of François Mansart

5. François Mansart (1598 - 1666)

With an HPI of 65.86, François Mansart is the 5th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 45 different languages.

François Mansart (French pronunciation: [fʁɑ̃swa mɑ̃saʁ]; 23 January 1598 – 23 September 1666) was a French architect credited with introducing classicism into Baroque architecture of France. The Encyclopædia Britannica cites him as the most accomplished of 17th-century French architects whose works "are renowned for their high degree of refinement, subtlety, and elegance".Mansart, as he is generally known, popularized the mansard roof, a four-sided, double slope gambrel roof punctuated with windows on the steeper lower slope which created additional habitable space in the garrets.

Photo of Jules Hardouin-Mansart

6. Jules Hardouin-Mansart (1646 - 1708)

With an HPI of 65.18, Jules Hardouin-Mansart is the 6th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 37 different languages.

Jules Hardouin-Mansart (French pronunciation: [ʒyl aʁdwɛ̃ mɑ̃saʁ]; 16 April 1646 – 11 May 1708) was a French Baroque architect and builder whose major work included the Place des Victoires (1684–1690); Place Vendôme (1690); the domed chapel of Les Invalides (1690), and the Grand Trianon of the Palace of Versailles. His monumental work was designed to glorify the reign of Louis XIV of France.

Photo of Louis Le Vau

7. Louis Le Vau (1612 - 1670)

With an HPI of 64.78, Louis Le Vau is the 7th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.

Louis Le Vau (French pronunciation: [lwi lə vo]; 1612 – 11 October 1670) was a French Baroque architect, who worked for Louis XIV of France. He was an architect that helped develop the French Classical style in the 17th century.

Photo of Jean Nouvel

8. Jean Nouvel (1945 - )

With an HPI of 64.30, Jean Nouvel is the 8th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 48 different languages.

Jean Nouvel (French: [ʒɑ̃ nuvɛl]; born 12 August 1945) is a French architect. Nouvel studied at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris and was a founding member of Mars 1976 and Syndicat de l'Architecture, France’s first labor union for architects. He has obtained a number of prestigious distinctions over the course of his career, including the Aga Khan Award for Architecture (for the Institut du Monde Arabe which Nouvel designed), the Wolf Prize in Arts in 2005 and the Pritzker Prize in 2008. A number of museums and architectural centres have presented retrospectives of his work.

Photo of Charles Garnier

9. Charles Garnier (1825 - 1898)

With an HPI of 63.77, Charles Garnier is the 9th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.

Jean-Louis Charles Garnier (pronounced [ʃaʁl ɡaʁnje]; 6 November 1825 – 3 August 1898) was a French architect, perhaps best known as the architect of the Palais Garnier and the Opéra de Monte-Carlo.

Photo of Hector Guimard

10. Hector Guimard (1867 - 1942)

With an HPI of 63.73, Hector Guimard is the 10th most famous French Architect.  His biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Hector Guimard (French pronunciation: [ɛktɔʁ ɡimaʁ], 10 March 1867 – 20 May 1942) was a French architect and designer, and a prominent figure of the Art Nouveau style. He achieved early fame with his design for the Castel Beranger, the first Art Nouveau apartment building in Paris, which was selected in an 1899 competition as one of the best new building facades in the city. He is best known for the glass and iron edicules or canopies, with ornamental Art Nouveau curves, which he designed to cover the entrances of the first stations of the Paris Metro.Between 1890 and 1930, Guimard designed and built some fifty buildings, in addition to one hundred and forty-one subway entrances for Paris Metro, as well as numerous pieces of furniture and other decorative works. However, in the 1910s Art Nouveau went out of fashion and by the 1960s most of his works had been demolished, and only two of his original Metro edicules were still in place. Guimard's critical reputation revived in the 1960s, in part due to subsequent acquisitions of his work by Museum of Modern Art, and art historians have noted the originality and importance of his architectural and decorative works. Guimard was a disciple of Viollet le Duc.

Pantheon has 46 people classified as architects born between 1080 and 1955. Of these 46, 3 (6.52%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living architects include Jean Nouvel, Dominique Perrault, and Anne Lacaton. The most famous deceased architects include Georges-Eugène Haussmann, Eugène Viollet-le-Duc, and André Le Nôtre. As of April 2022, 2 new architects have been added to Pantheon including Victor Laloux and Anne Lacaton.

Living Architects

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Deceased Architects

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Newly Added Architects (2022)

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Which Architects were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 25 most globally memorable Architects since 1700.