The late architect Zaha Hadid (1950-2016) was a longstanding supporter of PAD London, which first pitched its smart black tent in London’s Hanover Square ten years ago. In 2010, the French ambassador presented Hadid with the distinction of Commandeur dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres at the fair, which by then had expanded and relocated to nearby Berkeley Square.
Patrick Perrin, the chief executive and president of PAD Paris and London, says: “She was more than a supporter. She was a member and president of our jury. She came every year and always bought something. She would criticise things all the time, me especially. She was fantastic.”
This year, among the 66 galleries in the new-look, all-white tent are 14 newcomers contributing to the mix of contemporary and Modern design as well as decorative, tribal and fine art. Among the regulars is the Cologne-based Ammann Gallery, which is showing images of Hadid’s buildings taken by Hélène Binet.
The architectural photographer’s earliest shots of Hadid’s work pre-date her buildings. “The first objects were a sofa and a table at an exhibition at the AA,” Binet says, referring to a show at the Architectural Association in London where Hadid was a star student. Speaking as she headed to Belgium to photograph a recently completed Antwerp Port Authority building, Binet says it is tough knowing that Hadid did not live to see the Port House, which opened last week, completed.
Meanwhile, David Gill Gallery, which is showing at the fair, opens a solo show of Hadid's furniture, UltraStellar (3-29 October). Among the eight pieces are examples of her last designs.
Back to the more prosaic matter of returning to London’s Mayfair after the UK voted for Brexit and the subsequent fall in the pound against the euro, Perrin is stoical. “Frankly, I’ll make less money because of the pound, maybe a 15% or 20% difference.” But he does not see London-based collectors relocating any time soon. “Who will move to Frankfurt or Paris and pay more tax?” he asks.
• PAD London, Berkeley Square, London: collectors’ preview, 3 October; VIP opening, 4 October; public days, 5-9 October