The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the shortlist of six finalist projects in the running for the inaugural RIBA International Prize. The first RIBA Award open to any qualified architect in the world, the International Prize seeks to name the world’s “most significant and inspirational” building. Criteria for consideration include the demonstration of “visionary, innovative thinking and excellence of execution, whilst making a distinct contribution to its users and to its physical context.”
The six finalists were named from a longlist of 30 buildings, from which a further selection of 21 projects have been recognized by the jury for the RIBA Award for International Excellence. The jury has also named the winner of the RIBA International Emerging Architect prize recognizing “the achievement of architects in the earlier stages of their career who are working on global projects.”
"Our panel of jurors have been particularly impressed by the way in which each building reacts to, resolves and assimilates into the varying geographies and contexts - from dense urban cities to a small town in the Arctic Circle," said RIBA President Jane Duncan on the naming of the finalists. "Each project resolves the complex demands of its context with ingenuity, exceptional detail and finishing and a sensitivity to the needs of the users and communities which will inhabit these spaces."
Arquipelago Contemporary Arts Centre (Menos é Mais) is located in The Azores, an archipelago of nine small islands in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Restoring the site of an 1890s sweet potato distillery, the building expertly combines restoration, reconstruction and new build, drawing on the history of the building and its distinctive black Basalt exterior to create a restrained, industrial character. Constructed over the course of three years, the process revealed a complex of cloisters and cells in the basement of the old distillery, which have been transformed to display artwork - an ancient backdrop for very contemporary use. The building has become a beacon for progress both locally and internationally, and has made a substantial impact on the local community - showing respect for its past and ambition for the future.
Designed to celebrate Azerbaijan’s independence and first president Heydar Aliyev, Zaha Hadid Architects’, Heydar Aliyev Centre in Baku was completed in 2013 and offers a vibrant programme of arts, music and performance to audiences in the vaulted spaces and distinctive wave-like form that dominates the eastern aspect of the city. The building represents a break from tradition - not least in the post-Soviet landscape of Baku, and now welcomes over 1000 visitors a day as both a public social space and a cultural nucleus for the city.
The complex landscape has been brought together into a single, fluid composition which appears out of the hill. The building is distinctive not only for its scale and undulating form, but for its use of white cladding and paving, a marked departure from the traditional architecture and aesthetic of the city. The heart of the building is found in its sophisticated and welcoming central auditorium; a warm performance space whose innovative use of oak to line and sculpt the interior showcases a sophistication in both vision and joinery.
A structure that celebrates the industrial heritage of its site context in Mexico City, David Chipperfield Architects, Museo Jumex is home to the largest private collection of Latin American contemporary art in the world. Centrally located in a bustling and overcrowded city, the building offers a contemplative space in which visitors can escape the rush of the city.
A large public space is divided across three spacious levels; a glazed Piano Nobile gallery and a flexible secondary space punctuated by a single large window flooding the space with light. The top floor opens out to present the museum’s collection under a soft diffused daylight through original factory roof lights. The quality of light distinctive to Chipperfield’s practice defines the space, as does the consistent sense of quality in the materials and subtle detailing that separate public from work space. A characteristic dialogue of travertine and timber marks the Museo Jumex as a remarkable building.
Stormen Concert Hall and Library has created a new community focus for a small town, with two new civic buildings in Bodø, 100km inside the Arctic Circle. DRDH’s first major building commission, the scheme is expertly stitched into the existing urban fabric, playing off the link to the town centre as well as the nearby harbour and the luminous experience of the Arctic sunshine. With rigorous attention to detail, material and the user’s experience of both the space of the library building and new concert hall spaces, the architect’s design is matched with technical ambition. The concert hall houses three music venues within its structure, and is considered comparable to the New York’s Carnegie Hall as one of the best in the world for symphonic music.
The Ring of Remembrance memorial in Notre-Dame-de-Lorette near Arras commemorates the thousands who died in the region during World War I. The unification of former enemies is the strong idea that underlines AAPP’s design scheme of the ring, inscribing all 600,000 names irrespective of their nationality, creed or rank. Located on the Hill of Lorette the location has long views over the battlefields of the plain of Artois, the piece sits lightly in the landscape, rooted at one end but cantilevers out precariously as the landscape falls away, and representing the fragility of peace.
The UTEC in Lima is a new faculty for a 50 year old engineering university to enable young Peruvians to gain engineering qualifications and to encourage social mobility. This powerful statement of a building symbolises a bold and positive future for Peru, and draws on the temperate climate of the city and cultural environment. Grafton Architects have created an innovative solution to the architectural program in the design of a vertical concrete campus, with open ended spaces of circulation interlinked with a series of suspended platforms that flow in between the structural frame, offering a balance between enclosed spaces and permeability to the exterior.
RIBA Award for International Excellence
Selected from the award longlist, these 21 projects have been selected as a testament to the high quality of nominated projects:
- Angdong Hospital, Baojing County, China / Rural Urban Framework
- Arquipelago Contemporary Arts Centre, Ribeira Grande, The Azores / Menos é Mais Arquitectos Associados and João Mendes Ribeiro Arquitecto
- Buenos Aires Ciudad Casa de Gobierno, Buenos Aires, Argentina / Foster + Partners, Berdichevsky Cherny Arquitectos and StudioMinond
- DLR Lexicon Dún Laoghaire Co, Dublin, Ireland / Carr Cotter Naessens
- Europaallee Baufeld E, Zurich, Switzerland / Caruso St John Architects and Bosshard Vaquer Architekten
- European Hansemuseum Lübeck, Germany / Studio Andreas Heller Architects & Designers
- Fine Arts Museum of Asturias, Oviedo, Spain / Mangado y Asociados
- Fulton Center New York, USA / Grimshaw, HDR and Page Ayres Cowley Architects
- Heydar Aliyev Centre Baku, Azerbaijan / Zaha Hadid Architects and DiA Holding
- Invisible House, Hampton, Australia / Peter Stutchbury Architecture
- Jockey Club Innovation Tower, Hung Hom, Hong Kong / Zaha Hadid Architects
- Museo Jumex, Mexico City, Mexico / David Chipperfield Architects and Taller Abierto de Arquitectura y Urbanismo
- Oita Prefectural Art Museum, Oita, Japan / Shigeru Ban Architects
- Public Library of Constitucion, Constitución, Chile / Sebastian Irarrazaval Arquitectos
- Saint Louis Art Museum, St Louis, USA / David Chipperfield Architects and HOK
- SkyTerrace Soo Khian Chan, Singapore / SCDA Architects
- St Angela's College, Cork, Ireland / O'Donnell + Tuomey
- Stormen Concert Hall, Theatre and Public Library, Bodø, Norway / DRDH Architects
- The Ring of Remembrance, International WWI Memorial of Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, Ablain-Saint-Nazaire, France / Agence d'Architecture Philippe Prost
- Tula House Heriot Bay, Quadra Island, Canada / Patkau Architects
- UTEC Universidad de Ingenieria y Tecnologia, Peru / Lima Grafton Architects and Shell Arquitectos
The buildings will now be visited by the Grand Jury to evaluate their candidacy. The winner will be announced on Thursday 24 November 2016.
News via RIBA.