Paulo Mendes da Rocha often says that the function of architecture is nothing more than ‘supporting the unpredictability of life’. Spaces stand everyday life, meetings, landscape, art. Something like a frame, which is often also considered a supporting element of a work of art, since it highlights and, mainly, directs the viewer's gaze to the main object. The phrase of the Brazilian architect combines well with the way that the Lacaton & Vassal office works. The French couple's award raises some questions about how accurate their choices are for the current moment in the world. This includes the philosophy of their work, the design solutions adopted and the material palette generally adopted.
Pritzker Prize 2021: The Latest Architecture and News
Renowned photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu has shared with ArchDaily a series of photos of one of the most influential projects of recent Pritzker Laureates, Anne Lacaton, and Jean-Philippe Vassal. The Transformation of the 530 dwellings in Bordeaux, 3 modernist residential buildings, reflect Lacaton & Vassal's sensitivity towards understanding existing structures. It also highlights how with minimal interventions, radical changes can be made to the habitability and usability of a modernist building -knowing that in Europe, the majority of these structures have ended up being demolished-. This approach was enough to select this transformation as the winner of the EU Mies 2019 Award, for the best contemporary architecture in Europe.
With a formal and material approach that differs from the scenarios we usually find in Architecture, Lacaton & Vassal —a French practice that marks its influence in contemporary times by being awarded the Pritzker Prize 2021— brings an open and generous vision to the field.
Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal founded their architectural studio Lacaton & Vassal in 1987, years after studying and working together at the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture et de Paysage de Bordeaux. The practice established in Paris has been awarded this year’s prestigious 2021 Pritzker Prize. Their built work leaves strong evidence of what they believe is relevant: sustainability, wellbeing, social responsibility, and the readaptation and the respect of the existing built environment.
The 2021 Pritzker Architecture Prize, architecture’s highest honor, has been granted to Anne Lacaton and Jean-Philippe Vassal, founders of Lacaton & Vassal, the French duo renowned for their multiple sustainable housing projects and for the Palais de Tokyo, a contemporary art gallery in Paris. In their three decades of work, Lacaton & Vassal always prioritized the “enrichment of human life”, benefiting the individual and supporting the evolution of the city.
Since the winner(s) of the Pritzker Prize 2021 will be announced on Tuesday, March 16th, we have asked our readers who should win the most important award in the field of architecture.
The Hyatt Foundation has revealed the announcement date of the Pritzker Prize 2021 Winner(s). The most relevant recognition in architecture will be announced on Tuesday, March 16th, 10:00 am EDT.