European Prize for Architecture - Nominations Tell a friend

European Prize for Architecture - Nominations
A humane and intellectual approach to architecture
Santiago Calatrava Alessandro Mendini banner_nominations-1.jpg banner_nominations-3.jpg banner_nominations.jpg


The European Centre presents Europe's most influential architects nominated for The European Prize for Architecture

The European Prize for Architecture recognizes those influential architects that have changed and challenged the direction of contemporary architecture today and who have blazoned a more humane and intellectual approach to architecture.

The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2015 Laureate - Santiago Calatrava - Spain/Swiss

About Santiago Calatrava

Santiago Calatrava Valls born 28 July 1951 is a Spanish neofuturistic architect, structural engineer, sculptor and painter. He has offices in New York City, Doha, and Zürich.

Calatrava was born in Benimàmet, an old municipality now integrated as an urban part of Valencia, Spain, where he received a degree in architecture at the Polytechnic University of Valencia. There he completed independent projects with fellow students, publishing two books on the vernacular architecture of Valencia and Ibiza. In 1975 he enrolled in theSwiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich, Switzerland, for a second degree in civil engineering. In 1981, after receiving his doctorate in civil engineering for his thesis, "On the Foldability of Space Frames," he started his architecture and engineering practice.

Calatrava's early career was largely dedicated to bridges and railway stations, with designs that elevated the status of civil engineering projects to new heights. His Montjuic Communications Tower in Barcelona, Spain (1991) in the heart of the 1992 Olympics site, as well as the Allen Lambert Galleria in Toronto, Canada (1992), were important works and turning points in his career, leading to a wide range of commissions. The Quadracci Pavilion (2001) of the Milwaukee Art Museum was his first building in the United States. Calatrava's entry into high-rise design began with an innovative 54-story-high twisting tower called Turning Torso (2005), located in Malmö, Sweden.

Calatrava’s most recent project nearly completion is the Neo-Futuristic railway station, the World Trade Center Transportation Hub, at the rebuilt World Trade Center in New York City.

Calatrava has defined his style as bridging the division between structural engineering and architecture. In his projects, he claims to continue a tradition of Spanish modernist engineering that included Félix Candela, Antonio Gaudí, and Rafael Guastavino, with a very personal style that derives from numerous studies of the human body and the natural world. Architecture critics, however, see his work as a continuation of the neofuturistic expressionism of Eero Saarinen.

Calatrava is also a sculptor and painter, claiming that the practice of architecture combines all the arts into one. In 2003, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City held an exhibition of his artistic and architectural work, entitled Santiago Calatrava: Sculpture Into Architecture.

In 2012, the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg held an exhibition of his work and this was followed up by an exhibition at the Vatican Museum in Rome. 

The Marlborough Gallery in New York is set to exhibit Calatrava’s work in May 2014. Eight of his sculptures will also be displayed along Park Avenue in New York City in the spring of 2015, between 52nd and 55th Streets.  Exhibitions of his work have also taken place in Germany, England, Spain, Italy and elsewhere.

The Florida Polytechnic University, Lakeland, Florida, is the recipient of the 2015 International Architecture Award and the 2015 American Architecture given by The Chicago Athenaeum and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies.

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The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2014 Laureate - Alessandro Mendini - Italy

Alessandro Mendini
About Alessandro Mendini

Alessandro Mendini (born 16 August 1931 in Milan) is an Italian designer and architect. He played an important part in the development of Italian design. He also worked, aside from his artistic career, for Casabella, Modo and Domus magazines. His design has been characterized by his strong interest in mixing different cultures and different forms of expression; he creates graphics, furniture, interiors, paintings and architectures and wrote several articles and books; he is also renowned as an enthusiastic member of jury in architectural competition for young designers. He also teaches at the University of Milan.Mendini graduated from Politecnico di Milano in 1959 with a degree in architecture and worked as a designer with Marcello Nizzoli. He was the editor-in-chief of a magazine from 1980 to 1985 and changed the landscape of modern design through his quintessential works of postmodernism, such as the Proust Armchair and the Groninger Museum. Just as works of the Renaissance period expressed human values and sensibilities, Mendini has contributed to bringing into the heart of design those “values” and “sensibilities” that have been eclipsed by commercialism and functionalism. He collaborates with leading international brands including Cartier, Hermes, and Swarovski.Currently he runs his own practice in Milan, the Atelier Mendini, together with his brother Francesco Mendini.

In the 1970s he was one of the main personalities of the Radical design movement. He became one of the founding members of the "Global Tools" collective, which was set up in 1973. In 1979 he joined the Studio Alchimia as a partner and there he worked with Ettore Sottsass and Michele De Lucchi. In 1982 he co-founded Domus Academy, a private postgraduate design school in Milan. As architect, he designed several buildings; for example the Alessi residence in Omegna, Italy; the theater complex "Teatrino della Bicchieraia" in the Tuscan city of Arezzo; the Forum Museum of Omegna, a memorial tower inHiroshima, Japan; the Groninger Museum in The Netherlands and the Arosa Casino in Switzerland.His work in product design was influential in the sense that it pushed the boundaries of what products could be. A notable example is his Lassú chair from 1974, a chair built on top of a pyramid structure, which forgoes conventional notions of function. Mendini was addressing the domestic object as a conduit for spirituality, an idea reinforced by his ritualised burning of the chair, photographed for placement on the cover of Casabella in 1975.As designer, the historical value of the RAMUN amuleto lamp designed in 2010 is the ring shape that accentuates the strengths of LED, which enhances lighting uniformity. The use of a transparent material flaunts the mechanism of the lamp. A mix of various colors in the minimalist structure, consisting of circles and straight lines without any spring or wire, inspires human sensibility.

SteintorHannover Groninger_museum Museo-del-Casalingo

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The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2013 Laureate - Marco Casagrande - Finland

About Marco Casagrande

Marco Casagrande, the Finnish architect, environmental artist, urban philosopher, architectural theorist, writer, renegade, and professor of architecture is the recipient of the 2013 European Prize for Architecture. 
Since 2003, he has led the Casagrande Laboratory in Helsinki, Finland and WEAK! together with Hsieh Ying-Chun and Roan Ching-Yueh in Taipei, Taiwan. Previously, Casagrande worked and collaborated with the Finnish architect, Sami Rintala. The Casagrande & Rintala team produced architectonic installations moving in-between architecture and environmental art for five over years. Casagrande views cities as complex energy organisms in which different overlapping layers of energy flows are determining the actions of the citizens, as well as the development of the city. By mixing environmentalism and urban design, the architect develops methods of punctual manipulation of the urban energy flows in order to create an ecologically sustainable urban development towards the so-called “Third Generation City” [post industrial city]. Over the last few years, he has taught and worked extensively in Europe, Asia, and North America designing and building sustainable and ecological designs while forwarding his unique architectural philosphy. His work is a cross-disciplinary mix of environmental art, architecture, sociology, and urban thinking. Over a few years, Casagrande has bought together experts from the disciplines of architecture, urban planning, art sociology, and science and has successfully conceptualized the Third Generation City, Ultra Ruin, and Urban Acupuncture, prophesizing a future for architecture that is based upon profound local knowledge. At the end of the project, he will use insect architecture, recycled buildings, ancient literature, and demolished leftovers as a ruin to coexist with nature.




The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2012 Laureates - TYIN Architects - Norway


About TYIN Architects

TYIN tegnestue Architects consists of Yashar Hanstad and Andreas Grøntvedt Gjertsen. The office formed during 2008, while the duo were studying architecture at the university of Trondheim – NTNU. A search for professional meaning would lead the office to the far corners of the world. The young office completed a series of global projects, from the Thai-Burmese border to the forests of Sumatra. In later years TYIN have focused on projects on their native soil of Norway, while also giving lectures at universities around the world and working as teachers at NTNU. TYIN emphasize a fluid and open process. An architecture of pragmatism, where design and construction go hand in hand. Simplicity in details and an architecture that allows for user influence is a core value of the office, as well as the architect’s involvement through the entirety of the construction process.


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The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2011 Laureates - Graft Architekten - Germany


About Graft Architekten

GRAFT is a design studio conceived as a ‘label’ for architecture, urban planning, exhibition design, music and the “pursuit of happiness”. Graft was founded in 1998 in Los Angeles, California by Lars Krückeberg, Wolfram Putz and Thomas Willemeit, and headed by partner Alejandra Lillo from 2007 until early 2011. A second Graft office was opened 2001 in Berlin, followed by a third office in Beijing in 2004, which is headed by founding partner Gregor Hoheisel.



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The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

Announcing the 2010 Laureate - Bjarke Ingles - Denmark



About the architect

Bjarke Ingels (born 2 October 1974) is a Danish architect. He heads the architectural practice Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) which he founded in 2006. In 2009 he co-founded the design consultancy KiBiSi. Known for his innovative and ambitious designs and projects, many of his buildings defy traditional architectural conventions and dimensions, and are often highly photogenic,[1] ranging from representations of mountains to snowflakes. He often incorporates sustainable development ideas and sociological concepts into his designs, but often tries to achieve a balance between the playful and practical approaches to architecture. Amongst his works are Islands Brygge Harbour Bath, a series of five open-air swimming pools in Copenhagen Harbour (2003) and three major housing projects in Ørestad on the southern outskirts of Copenhagen: VM Houses (2005), multi-family housing in V and M shaped apartment buildings; Mountain Dwellings (2008), an extensive parking facility combined with terraced housing; and 8 House (2010), a large mixed-use housing development.

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