Andreas G. Gjertsen and Yashar Hanstad, principals of the architecture cooperative TYIN tegnestue Architects in Trondheim, Norway, have been named as this year’s winners of The European Prize for Architecture. The young Norwegian architects were honored for their humanitarian work designing and building with community participation in poor and underdeveloped areas in Africa and Asia. Annually presented by The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies, the prize is awarded to influential European architects “who have demonstrated a significant contribution to humanity and to the built environment through the art of architecture”. Continue reading for more information and a sample of TYIN tegnestue Architects’ work.
“This young Norwegian firm,” states Christian K. Narkiewicz-Laine, Museum President of The Chicago Athenaeum, “clearly understands the basic needs of the people for whom architecture must serve. ‘Serve’ is the key word here. This is not a glamorous architecture, but nonetheless, the most profound and noble in its attributes. Our institutions are not so interested in the newest skyscrapers gracing the shores of Dubai or the Champs-Élysées in Paris.” “The European Prize,” he continues, ”reaffirms our own institution’s commitment to finding and supporting a more humanistic approach to the practice of architectural design today.”
“Architecture should be a vehicle for social change, social improvement, and real cultural development,” continues Mr. Narkiewicz-Laine, “and not an end result of over-commercialization, over-consumption, and self- aggrandizement which is so overwhelmingly apparent in our contemporary world.”
“Such self-less pursuits in helping other nations solve the difficult problems of their environment, their ecology, their economic hardship, while building and supporting their local communities, as TYIN Architects have demonstrated,” Mr. Narkiewicz-Laine continues, “are the most important direction of our future architecture today.”
“The example of these young Norwegian architects is paramount in the coming decades for the Third World’s success at sustainability, urbanization, and social development, which contributes substantially to our world’s greater peace and harmony.”
“As with any great architecture, TYIN Architects’ works are able to transcend our social debate by producing an architecture that is timeless, deeply rooted in its context, and yet universal,” Mr. Narkiewicz-Laine continues.
A formal ceremony for what has come to be known throughout the world as European architecture’s highest honor will be held in Istanbul, Turkey and New York in November. Previous Laureates of The European Prize for Architecture include: The Danish architect, Bjarke Ingels (2010) and the German architects, Graft Architekten (2011).