Claude Cormier: Quebec landscape architect dead at 63

The world of landscape architecture is in mourning following the passing of Claude Cormier RCA, a visionary Quebec landscape architect known for his transformative designs and contributions to urban spaces. Cormier, whose landscape practice reshaped the aesthetics of Montreal and Toronto, passed away on September 15, 2023, at the age of 63 due to complications from Li-Fraumeni syndrome.

Born on June 22, 1960, Claude Cormier was a creative force hailing from Quebec, Canada. He dedicated his life to the art of landscape architecture, leaving an indelible mark on some of North America’s most iconic public spaces.

Cormier’s journey in the world of design and architecture was marked by academic excellence. He pursued a diverse range of studies, including History & Theory of Design at Harvard University, Landscape Architecture at the University of Toronto, and Agronomy at the University of Guelph. Armed with this multidisciplinary knowledge, he founded the renowned firm CCxA (formerly Claude Cormier et Associés) in Montreal in 1995.

Throughout his illustrious career, Cormier’s firm had the privilege of working on major public projects in Montreal, Toronto, and the United States. Their innovative designs combined art and nature, reimagining urban spaces and fostering a sense of wonder among residents and visitors alike.

Claude Cormier’s impact on the field of landscape architecture was profound, earning his firm more than 100 awards for their groundbreaking designs. In 2010, the Harvard University Graduate School of Design hosted an exclusive retrospective exhibition titled “Erratics,” celebrating his visionary contributions to the field.

His commitment to his home province of Quebec was further acknowledged in 2009 when Cormier was knighted to the Ordre National du Québec, the highest honor bestowed upon individuals who have significantly contributed to the development and leadership of the province.

Internationally, Claude Cormier’s influence continued to grow. He was selected as an Emerging Voice for North America by the Architectural League of New York, recognizing his innovative approach to design. Fast Company Magazine also lauded him as one of 14 international designers advancing the field.

In a testament to his global recognition, Phaidon Press invited Cormier’s firm to be featured in a publication celebrating the top 30 landscape architects worldwide. This honor showcased their impact on the field, transcending borders and cultures.

In Fall 2021, the landscape architecture world celebrated the publication of “Serious Fun, The Landscapes of Claude Cormier,” the first book exclusively dedicated to his practice, published by Oro editions. This comprehensive work provided insights into Cormier’s creative genius and his tireless pursuit of reimagining urban landscapes.