The Pritzker Prize’s purpose is “to honor a living architect whose built work demonstrates a combination of those qualities of talent, vision, and commitment, which has produced consistent and significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through the art of architecture”.
In my opinion Wang Shu’s architecture presents a contemporary and progressive approach that acknowledges the rich tradition of Chinese architecture. As the future generations of Chinese architects are influenced by his architecture, a generation that will be an active part of China’s growth, he will indirectly improve how millions will live in the next few years.
He calls his office Amateur Architecture Studio, but the work is that of a virtuoso in full command of the instruments of architecture — form, scale, material, space and light - Karen Stein, Pritzker Prize jury.
Works by Wang Shu:
More about the announcement:
We had the exclusive opportunity to interview Pritzker Prize Jury Alejandro Aravena about Wang Shu’s work and the reasons of his selection as the 2012 Pritzker Prize laureate, where he cites extracts of conversations with the Chinese architect.
Wang Shu’s outstanding architecture may be the consequence of being able to combine talent and intelligence. This combination allows him to produce masterpieces when a monument is needed, but also very careful and contained architecture when a monument is not the case. The intensity of his work may be a consequence of his relative youth, but the precision and appropriateness of his operations talk of great maturity.
Consider Ningbo Museum of History: it is so powerful, so overwhelming that it deserves to be called a masterpiece. You don’t visit the building; you are hit by the building. I remember having felt the same only a few times in my life, like when visiting Kahn’s Parliament in Bangladesh or his Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. Being “hit” by a building happens very rarely in architecture, because that kind of impact tends to belong more to music or film, where the experience of a piece can be extremely moving and touching to the point of altering the mood in a deep positive way. Unfortunately this cannot be transmitted by photographs.
Cities are ever-evolving and ever-transforming, constantly being regenerated – demolished and salvaged to start anew. Houston, Texas’s first reservoir, built in 1927 near Buffalo Bayou Park, is no exception. This is another one of those exceptional neglected spaces within a developed city that holds the potential to be transformed into “landscape infrastructure”, as referred to by Kevin Shanley, CEO of SWA Group, the Landscape Architecture firm working on the park’s current 2.3-mile upgrade from Shepherd-to-Sabine, an extension to the Sabine-to-Bagby stretch.
The story of the relationship between the re-discovered reservoir and Buffalo Bayou Park’s development is very exciting and promising. Lisa Gray of Chron writes about the state of the reservoir today and the possibilities for its future. Continue reading for more.
Architects: Kengo Kuma & Associates
Location: Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan
Client: Manten Corporation
Structure: Jun Sato Structural Engineering
Facility Design: Tosai Corporation, Kyu-den Ko Corporation
Construction: Matsumoto-gumi Corporation
Built Area: 212.98 sqm
Photographs: Masao Nishikawa
After years of planning and widespread community support, the new Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science, designed by Grimshaw Architects, broke ground in Downtown Miami’s Museum Park just last week. The groundbreaking ceremony took place at the museum’s new site overlooking Biscayne Bay, marking the continuation of Miami’s rise as one of the world’s most culturally rich cities. The groundbreaking event marks the beginning of construction, with the new museum scheduled to open to the public by early 2015. More images and project description after the break.
Architects: Dekleva Gregoric Arhitekti
Location: Maui, Hawaii, USA
Client: Robert & Drazena Stroj
Project Team: Aljoša Dekleva u.d.i.a., M.Arch. (AA Dist),Tina Gregorič u.d.i.a., M.Arch. (AA Dist), Flavio Coddou dipl.arch., Lea Kovič u.d.i.a.
Site Area: 10,000 sqm
Project Area: 450 sqm
Project Year: 2011
Video: Cristóbal Palma
We’ve been following the progress of Herzog and de Meuron’s recent projects, such as the construction stages of the Elbe Philharmonic and the design of the Museum der Kulturen Basel. Yet, every so often, it is interesting to view some of the firm’s older projects to see the common line of thought running throughout their portfolio and examine how their design process has evolved throughout the years to respond to newer technologies, materials and environmental concerns. Although the Sammlung Goetz Museum in Munich was designed and constructed nearly two decades ago, the project illustrates the firm’s obsession with the building’s outer treatment. Material selection and facade design is an important facet of the firm’s identity, but we noticed another common thread between this project and their future works – the fascination with the floating volume.
More about the museum, including more photos, after the break.
Architect: MAD Architects
Location: Ordos, Inner Mongolia, China
Directors: Ma Yansong, Yosuke Hayano, Dang Qun
Design Team: Shang Li, Andrew C. Bryant, Howard Jiho Kim, Matthias Helmreich, Linda Stannieder, Zheng Tao, Qin Lichao, , Sun Jieming, Yin Zhao, Du Zhijian, Yuan Zhongwei, Yuan Ta, Xie Xinyu, Liu Weiwei, Felipe Escudero, Sophia Tang, Diego Perez, Art Terry, Jtravis B Russett, Dustin Harris
Client: Municipality of Ordos
Site Area: 27,760 sqm
Building Area: 41, 227 sqm
Building Height: 40 m
Photographs: Shu He
Presented at the Vitra Design Museum Gallery in Weil am Rhein, Germany, the ‘Album’ exhibition by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec. The main focus of the exhibition is on their drawings, in addition to archive photographs of models and projects that all come together to offer a panorama of their work, extending from everyday details to a global approach. The exhibition was launched February 3rd and is up until June 3rd. More information after the break.
The ’365 – Charming Everyday Things’ is a project for an exhibition which introduces 365 Japanese daily items that are to be displayed and sold in Paris and will eventually travel throughout Japan. Produced by DGT Architects, the location was chosen after over 40 visits of places in Paris. The chosen place is originally a metal factory which was built in the 19th century. More images and architects’ description after the break.
In Form Follows Nature, edited by Rudolf Finsterwalder, you are treated to “an outline of the history of the human examination of nature and presents a perspective for further possible lessons from nature.” Wilfried Wang, for examples, gives a particularly scathing review of the Enlightenment and it contributions. From these critiques and histories a base is built to demonstrate how the forms and process of nature can be used to generate form. The book stresses that copying nature is charlatanism and misses the point. Architects must understand the underlying principles and not the end product to achieve success.
Have a look inside after the break.
The Architecture Foundation of BC promotes big ideas that recognize sustainable design, architectural merit and innovation in order to advance the knowledge and practice of the design of sustainable buildings in British Columbia. They are inviting participants of this competition…