His first architectural practice was established in Zurich in 1981; his firm now also has offices in Valencia and Paris.
Calatrava has gained an international reputation for integrating technology and aesthetics to produce dynamic structural forms that challenge traditional architectural and engineering concepts. He is famous throughout Europe for elegant bridges and public buildings that are descendents, in their different ways, of London's nineteenth-century steel and glass Crystal Palace, the greenhouse-style exhibition space that signalled the beginning of pure engineering as a new architectural form.
Many of Calatrava's creations are open structures that use laminated glass in daring and dramatic applications where "an apparent disequilibrium or rather a sense of frozen movement is heightened by the lightness of the structure," as Philip Jodidio writes in his book on the architect.
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