Member News

Obituary: James Nagle, FAIA (1938-2021)

by Edward Grunts | Feb 18, 2021

James Lee “Jim” Nagle, one of a group of “rebel” architects known as the Chicago Seven, died January 19 of complications from Alzheimer’s Disease. He was 83.

Nagle was a founder of what is now Sheehan Nagle Hartray Architects, a 100-person firm with offices in Chicago and London.

Born in Iowa City, Iowa, and educated on both coasts of the United States, Nagle was considered the quintessential Midwestern architect, happy to call Chicago home and proud of its reputation as a center for world-class modern architecture, especially works by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

But he wasn’t afraid to critique his adopted hometown and challenge the status quo, characteristics that ultimately led to his involvement in the Chicago Seven.

Along with architects such as Thomas Beeby, Harry Weese, and the late Stanley Tigerman, Nagle was a staunch advocate for pluralism in architecture. He wanted Chicago to be known for more than its Miesian towers. He encouraged architects to go beyond the glass box and the International Style of architecture as the city evolved in the late 20th century.  Read the full article with photographs here

Jim Nagle was a great supporter of SAH, having been honored at the 2010 Awards Gala as part of the Chicago Seven, and as a Co-Chair of the 2012 Awards Gala.  

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