Patrik Schumacher has begun legal proceedings to remove three executors from their role in overseeing Zaha Hadid’s estate
Schumacher, who is principal of Zaha Hadid Architects and the fourth executor of the late architect’s will, has today (14 November) gone to the High Court to try and remove the other three: property developer Peter Palumbo, artist Brian Clarke and Zaha’s niece Rana Hadid.
It is understood Schumacher has become increasingly frustrated with how the executors, who are also trustees of the Zaha Hadid Foundation, have taken an interest in the running of the practice.
The estate of the late Zaha Hadid - and hence the executors - has ’ultimate control’ of Zaha Hadid Holdings and all the other related companies in the group.
In a joint statement released by Rana Hadid, Clarke and Palumbo, the three said they had been ‘appointed personally by Zaha Hadid because she trusted them to act in her best interests’ and had known them for decades.
A lawyer acting for the three said: ‘The attempt to remove these three executors is totally unjustified and misconceived. Unlike Mr Schumacher (who is seeking to gain financially from the estate), the three executors have no personal financial interest.
‘They have at all times acted properly and in good faith with the desire to do their best for the estate given their friendship with Zaha Hadid.’
Rana Hadid added: ‘My aunt, Zaha, would have been devastated to learn what Schumacher is doing and we feel obliged to resist his claims in order to defend her great name and legacy.’
In 2016, the three hit out at Schumacher following his talk at the World Architecture Festival in Berlin, where he said that social housing should be scrapped, Hyde Park built on and all public space privatised.
They said at the time: ‘Knowing Dame Zaha as well as we did, we can state categorically that she would have been totally opposed to these views and would have disassociated herself from them. We personally also totally disagree with these views.’
In response a spokesperson for Zaha Hadid Architects said: ’This is a matter relating solely to the executors of Zaha Hadid’s estate.’
Schumacher released a statement of his own saying: ’[Regrettably] I have been left with no real choice in order to move matters along constructively in accordance with the wishes of the late Zaha Hadid.’
“It will be for the court to decide the merit of the application.’