Norman Foster is undoubtedly one of the most influential architects of our time. Since establishing his award-winning practice in 1967 – originally titled Foster Associates – the Pritzker Prize laureate has grown Foster + Partners into an international powerhouse, with project offices in more than twenty countries.
The Manchester native has become known for contributing well-designed, imaginative solutions to complex design problems, while remaining sensitive to the environment and embracing the highest technological standards. His diverse portfolio ranges from urban masterplans, public infrastructure, airports, civic and cultural buildings, offices and workplaces to private houses and product design.
As stated in the 1999 Pritzker Jury Citation, “Sir Norman Foster’s pursuit of the art and science of architecture has resulted in one building triumph after another, each one in its own way, unique.”
Foster + Partners has received nearly 500 awards and citations for excellence and has won more than 86 national and international competitions. Some of Foster’s greatest achievements include receiving the 21st Pritzker Architecture Prize in 1999, the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal for Architecture (1994), the Royal Gold Medal for Architecture (1983), and the Gold Medal of the French Academy of Architecture (1991). In 1990 he was granted a Knighthood in the Queen’s Birthday Honors, and in 1999 was honored with a Life Peerage, becoming The Lord Foster of Thames Bank.
Check out the latest projects and news from Foster + Partners here on ArchDaily.
For the 13th Venice Biennale, Norman Foster was invited to create two exhibitions. On the one hand, there’s Central Pavilion, “Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank HQ”, specifically commissioned by David Chipperfield, which presents how a public space, created by physically lifting a tower to make a space at its base, has been used by people over time.
On the other hand, we find“Gateway.” Located at the beginning of the Arsenale, it is one of the first spaces the public encounters at the Biennale. In this installation, viewers are presented with an intense dose of images and words, representing different types of buildings and spaces, criss-crossed with the names of the architects, designers and planners that have influenced our built environment over the years.
We had the chance to interview Norman Foster, who tells us more about “Gateway” in this video. Full interview coming tomorrow!
More about this exhibit after the break:
From the architects:
The Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank was designed by Norman Foster in 1979. At the core of the project is the attempt to create a civic space, a piece of common ground for the city. Though the building’s design went through many variations – culminating in the final scheme, completed in 1985 – the common denominator throughout was a desire to create a public arena by lifting the building up to ensure a flow of pedestrian movement across the site. This covered space is lit naturally by an external “sunscoop”, which reflects sunlight down through the glazed “underbelly” of an atrium at the heart of the building. Through the medium of models, sketches, drawings, and photographs, this exhibition shows the evolution of the design of the space and the tower that defines it.
Foster + Partners is about to break the mold of New York’s static Park Avenue skyline, as they have been announced as winner of the highly publicized competition to replace the aging tower of 425 Park Avenue with a new world-class, sustainable office tower.
Lord Foster said: “I have a personal connection with New York, which has been a source of inspiration since my time at Yale, when the new towers on Park Avenue and its neighborhoods were a magnet for every young architect. Seeing first-hand the works of Mies van der Rohe, Gordon Bunshaft, Eero Saarinen and Philip Johnson was tremendously exciting then – I am delighted to have this very special opportunity to design a contemporary tower to stand alongside them. Our aim is to create an exceptional building, both of its time and timeless, as well as being respectful of this context – a tower that is for the City and for the people that will work in it, setting a new standard for office design and providing an enduring landmark that befits its world-famous location.”
Continue after the break to learn more about Foster’s winning proposal and to review the existing condition of 425 Park Ave.
Foster + Partners has broke ground on the Hongqiao Vantone SunnyWorld Centre, new dynamic mixed-use community centered on a four-hectare public park in the heart of Shanghai Hongqiao CBD. The large-scale urban plan that extends from Shanghai’s main station and brings together highly efficient, flexible office buildings, animated at ground level by shops, restaurants and a range of new civic spaces.
Continue after the break to learn more.
With last year’s opening of the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero and the near-completion of the World Trade Center One, Daniel Libeskind’s vision for the World Trade Center site is close to presenting the future of NYC’s downtown financial center, 11 years after the attacks. Studio Daniel Libeskind was selected to develop the master plan for the site in 2003, and since has been coordinating with NYC’s numerous agencies and individual architects to rebuild the site. The project, in Libeskind’s words, is a “healing of New York”, a “site of memory” and “a space to witness the resilience of America”.
Follow us after the break for more on the elements and progress of the master plan.
Taking place at the Shanghai Oil Painting and Sculpture Institute (SPSI), from July 25 to August 25, the ‘Foster + Partners: the Art of Architecture’ exhibition is the first major survey of the studio’s work to be held in China. It reveals details of a number of new projects underway in the region, including headquarters for Citic Bank in Hangzhou, a new tower in Nanjing and the Vantone development in Shanghai. It is also an opportunity to see the original models and sketches for high-profile completed buildings, such as Beijing International Airport, the Millau Viaduct in France, Hearst Tower in New York and the Swiss Re headquarters in London. More architects’ description after the break.
The Architectural Association and Foster + Partners have announced AA diploma student Yi Yvonne Weng as winner of the 2012 Foster + Partners Prize for her project, ‘The 6th Layer – Expolorative Canopy Trail’. The prize is awarded annually to the AA Diploma student whose portfolio best addresses the themes of sustainability and infrastructure.
Yvonne Weng stated: “Programmatically, the project is centred on scientific exploration and harvesting medicinal plants, which provides an alternative use of the forest without destroying it. At the same time, the positive occupation of the territory it enables could provide a level of surveillance that helps to protect both the endangered environment and the indigenous population.”
Continue after the break to learn more.
L&L Holding Company, LLC, today announced that four of the world’s most acclaimed architecture firms – Foster + Partners (Lord Norman Foster), Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (Lord Richard Rogers), OMA (Rem Koolhaas) and Zaha Hadid Architects – are participating this week in the conceptual design phase of its architectural competition for a new office tower to be constructed at 425 Park Avenue in Manhattan.
In April of this year, L&L Holding invited 11 of the world’s most accomplished architects to express their interest in competing for the commission to design a new tower at 425 Park Avenue. Of those invited, nine firms chose to enter the competition. After careful deliberations, L&L Holding narrowed its list to the four selected firms, each of which is led by a Pritzker Prize-winning architect with extensive international experience and proven expertise in office tower design.
The architects and their teams have prepared and are presenting their conceptual designs this week for a 650,000 square foot tower that will be designed to high L.E.E.D. sustainability standards.
The Challenge: Convert Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabéu Stadium into “an architectural icon for Madrid and an internationally-recognized exemplar of sports infrastructure.”
The Contenders: Three teams, each made up of two all-star firms (one Spanish, one not).
Find out which other famous Architects are the competition, after the break.
Architects: Foster and Partners
Location: Turin, Italy
Design Group: MAIRE Engineering (agent), Foster and Partners, Ltd. ICIS, Giugiaro, Arch CAMERANA Benedict, Studio Ass Mellano, Buonomo Vigil Studio, Studio Ass CO.PA.CO, Prof. G. Garzino, Studio A. Lazzerini, M. Arch Luciani, Prof. Ing Ossola, POLIEDRA S.P.A. and TEKSYSTEM
New building gross area: 36,232 sqm.
Photographs: Courtesy of comunicarch
Cuban ballet star Carlos Acosta has selected Norman Foster to redevelop one of Fidel Castro’s unfinished spaces – the School of Ballet on the outskirts of Havana. Acosta studied ballet at the Cuban National Ballet School and has danced with the Royal Ballet since 1998.
The stunning, derelict building was never completed during the Cuban revolution, as the design and architects of the Cuban National Art Schools (las Escuelas Nacionales de Arte, or ENA) were deemed irrelevant in the prevailing political climate. However, in March 1999, the three architects – Ricardo Porro, Vittorio Garatti and Roberto Gottardi – were called to lay out a budget to preserve the languished schools. These preservation efforts include the School of Ballet, whose cluster of domed volumes, designed in 1961 by Italian Vittorio Garatti, are connected by an organic layering of Catalan vaults that follow a winding path.
As reported on bdonline, Norman Foster told the Sunday Times: “Carlos is a great dancer who is inspiring the regeneration of an iconic ruin of early modernism outside Havana.”
Steven Holl and Norman Foster have been chosen to design the next two Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centers in the United Kingdom. As reported by bdonline, Foster will design in his hometown of south Manchester at the Christie hospital, while Holl will design at the St. Bartholomew’s (Barts) hospital in London. This will be Holl’s second UK project, following the Glasgow School of Art.
Continue reading for more information.
Foster + Partners was awarded first prize for their museum design in collaboration with Adrien Gardere for Narbonne in southern France. The museum’s central collection includes more than 1,000 ancient stone relief funerary blocks excavated from a nearby archaeological site, as Narbonne’s historical past as a vital Roman port has left an impressive legacy of buildings and ancient relics. Within the new design, Foster + Partners has created a wall to insert the stones that will act as a natural barrier to separate the public galleries from the more private restoration spaces. The building will also reinforce the strong landscape connection between water and gardens due to the site’s adjacency to the Canal du Midi.
More about the museum design after the break.
Metro officials have released six conceptual visions that suggest how the historic Los Angeles Union Station could be transformed by 2050. Preliminary “Vision Boards” were released in a public forum at Union Station last week, and although they are not part of the formal evaluation process, they have ignited an immense amount of public interest in the competition.
In an article posted on The Source, Los Angeles Mayor and Metro Board Chair Antonio Villaraigosa described that this competition is “about preparing for the future.” As plans for the California High-Speed Rail System evolve, it is imperative that Union Station is redeveloped to meet the standards of a 21st century transportation hub.
Continue after the break to view each Vision Board provided by the six well-known practices shortlisted for the competition.
Aerial photographer Jason Hawkes captures London’s hazy skyline in both day and night. Although still under construction, The Shard appears to already dwarf most to the city. The building is designed by Renzo Piano and is slated to become the tallest in Europe. In addition, Norman Foster’s infamous Gherkin, formally known as the Swiss Re Building, is instantly recognizable in nearly every frame as it is a landmark within the dense metropolis.
Construction is underway for the new Datong Art Museum in China, designed by Foster + Partners. Referred to as China’s ‘Museum of the 21st Century’, the 32,000-square-meter venue will be one of four major new buildings within Datong New City’s cultural plaza. The museum will open in 2013 and represent China in the ‘Beyond the Building’ Basel Art international tour.
Luke Fox, a senior partner at Foster + Partners stated, “We are delighted to reveal designs for the new museum and look forward to working with the city to take the project to the next stage. When complete, Datong’s new quarter will be the center of the city’s cultural life, with the new museum as its ‘urban room’ – a dynamic space, open to everyone to meet and enjoy its different displays and activities.”
Continue after the break for more on the Datong Art Museum.
One of the greatest Mediterranean Ports is about to be transformed. Work has begun on the Old Port of Marseille as part of a series of regeneration projects to be completed in time for the city’s inauguration as European Capital of Culture in 2013. Based on French landscape architect Michel Desvigne’s and London-based architects Foster + Partners’ competition-winning master plan, the project will reclaim the quaysides as a civic space, creating new informal venues for performances and events, while traffic is relocating traffic to a safe, semi-pedestrianised public realm.
Lord Foster stated, “I know the harbor at Marseille well and it is a truly grand space. This project is a great opportunity to enhance it using very simple means, to improve it with small, discreet pavilions for events, for markets, for special occasions. Our approach has been to work with the climate, to create shade, but at the same time to respect the space of the harbor – just making it better.”
Thanks to our readers’ help like, Jonathan Choe, we bring you an Architecture City Guide to Singapore. The city’s “recent prosperity and extremely dense urban situation has lead to a wealth of incredible architecture from architects around the world,” says Choe. Today we bring you only 12 buildings as a starting point. Please leave some of your favorites in the comment section below as we intend to expand it in the near future.