Toyo Ito has been selected to join a distinguished roster of laureates, including Mies van der Rohe, I.M. Pei, Jane Jacobs and Maya Lin, as the 2014 Thomas Jefferson Medalist in Architecture. Presented by the University of Virginia, in collaboration with the Thomas Jefferson Foundation at Monticello, the award recognizes significant “achievements of those who embrace endeavors in which Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and third U.S. president, excelled and held in high regard.”
“At its best, architecture is alchemical, transforming the pragmatics of site, structure, program and enclosure into something never before experienced,” said Kim Tanzer, dean of the U.Va. School of Architecture. “It takes us beyond ourselves and helps us aspire to inhabit and contribute to a more evolved world. Toyo Ito’s work has this quality; both ethereal and utterly grounded, fantastical and practical, his architecture helps us to imagine new forms of human experience. His meaningful use of emerging digital tools, combined with his sophisticated deployment of non-Cartesian rationality, will inspire architects for generations to come.”
The School of Architecture will host a translated public talk by Ito on April 11 at 3:30 p.m. in Old Cabell Hall Auditorium. More information about Ito’s selection, and the other two award winners, can be found here.