navigation bar Houghton Mifflin Social Studies Communities
Biographies Unit Biographies

I.M. Pei 1917–
Architect

Many people live and work in cities. They need apartment buildings, office buildings, schools, and many other kinds of buildings. I.M. Pei (PAY) is an architect, a person who designs buildings. His big, modern buildings are in cities all over the world.

I.M. Pei was born in China. He came to the United States to study architecture when he was 18 years old. He started working as an architect in 1948. Over the years, Pei has designed buildings in U.S. cities such as Washington, D.C., New York City, and Boulder, Colorado.

His work includes skyscrapers, housing projects, libraries, and museums. His designs are modern. For example, Pei was hired to design an addition for a famous old museum in France, the Louvre (LOOV rah). He created a tall pyramid of glass. Pei has a talent for making modern buildings that fit into older surroundings. He has won many awards and is one of the best-known architects today.

Comprehension Check

What does I.M. Pei do?

Critical Thinking

Why do you think I.M. Pei has won many awards?