For the second year in a row, Zaha Hadid was announced as the winner of the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize. Often labeled as the UK’s most important architecture award, Hadid will be awarded £20,000 for her design of the Evelyn Grace Academy in London. Recognizing the ‘architects of the building that has made the greatest contribution to the evolution of architecture in the past year’, to be considered the project must be built in Britain or the architects head office must be in the UK.
Zaha Hadid’s Evelyn Grace Academy was shortlisted for the RIBA Stirling Prize along with O’Donnell and Tuomey’s An Gaelaras, David Chipperfield Architects’s Folkwang Museum , AHMM’s Angel Building, Bennetts Associates’s Royal Shakespeare Theatre, and the Velodrome by Hopkins Architects. Last year Hadid was awarded the prize for her design of the MAXXI Museum of Modern Art in Rome.
This year’s award was a bit controversial; former president of the RIBA, George Ferguson’s reaction, ‘This is an appalling result and the worst decision since the Magna Centre beat Girmshaw’s Eden Project to win the Stirling Prize in 2001. It’s a great big own goal. It is also the worst possible message to send to Michael Gove. In fact it reinforces his case. A good school is one that can be replicated. But this can’t. It’s a one-off. The prize an award from architects for architects. It makes me angry.’
More reactions regarding the 2011 Stirling Prize can be found at the Architects Journal.