Established in 2006 by Zaha Hadid, ZAHA HADID DESIGN (ZHD) operates under the lead of Directors Maha Kutay and Woody Yao. Addressing contemporary design from a distinct perspective, ZHD implements the latest technological and material advancements with a thorough methodological approach.

Working in collaboration with the world’s most reputable brands, ZHD’s portfolio includes commissions from a wide range of disciplines such as fashion, jewellery, furniture design, limited editions accessories, interiors, exhibition, and set-design.



Born in Baghdad, Iraq in 1950, Hadid studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut before moving to London in 1972 to attend the Architectural Association (AA) School where she was awarded the Diploma Prize in 1977. Hadid founded Zaha Hadid Architects in 1979 and completed their first building, the Vitra Fire Station, Germany in 1993. Hadid founded the studio ZAHA HADID DESIGN in 2006, with a focus on product collaborations, furniture design, installations and exhibitions.

Hadid taught at the AA School until 1987 and held numerous chairs and guest professorships at universities around the world including Columbia, Harvard, Yale and the University of Applied Arts in Vienna.

Hadid’s outstanding contribution to architecture has been acknowledged by the world’s most respected institutions including the Forbes List of the ‘World’s Most Powerful Women’ and the Japan Art Association presenting her with the ‘Praemium Imperiale’. In 2010 and 2011, Hadid’s designs were awarded the Stirling Prize, one of architecture’s highest accolades, by the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Zaha Hadid passed away on the 31st of March 2016, and her legacy endures within the DNA of the design studio she created.

Portrait Courtesy of Brigitte Lacombe



Woody Yao joined Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) in 1993 whilst studying at the Architectural Association (AA) in London, while Maha Kutay did so in 1995 shortly after gaining her Master’s Degree in Architecture at Columbia University in New York.

Actively contributing to Zaha Hadid’s multidisciplinary approach to architecture and design, Woody worked on key competitions such as the Cardiff Bay Opera House, as well as on seminal built projects including the Guangzhou Opera House, The Jockey Club Innovation Tower at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and Hotel Puerta America in Madrid. Woody has also been instrumental in furthering the development of the practice’s archive and the growth of their exhibitions program, teaming over the years with the world’s most established and respected cultural institutions including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, MAK in Vienna, the Design Museum and Serpentine Gallery in London, MAXXI in Rome and the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.

Since the onset of her career Maha concentrated on products and interiors projects. Assisting Zaha Hadid in designing the ‘Tea&Coffee Set’ for Sawaya&Moroni, her first limited edition product collaboration, Maha then focused on developing the Product Design Dept of the practice — resulting in ZHD’s incorporation in 2006 and the launch of the ZHD’s own label in 2014. Over the years, Maha and her team worked on critically acclaimed pieces such as ‘Belu’, a seating sculpture for Kenny Schachter and ROVE Gallery and the “Liquid Glacial Collection” for David Gill Gallery. Currently co-leading ZHD’s team of designers, Maha has been instrumental in securing significant collaborations, many still ongoing, with global luxury brands, art galleries, as well as charitable institutions around the world.

Portrait Courtesy of Lasvit