Architect couple wins accolades

Architect couple wins accolades

The American Institute of Architects has named Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown as the 2016 AIA Gold Medal laureates, giving them the joint recognition that the Pritzker Prize organisers refused. Almost three years after a petition to retroactively recognise Scott Brown as co-winner of Venturi’s 1991 Pritzker Prize was rejected, the AIA has chosen to present both architects with its most prestigious annual award.

Based in Philadelphia, the husband-and-wife team are known for their post-modern style of architecture, with projects including the Vanna Venturi House at Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia, the Sainsbury Wing of London’s National Gallery and the Seattle Art Museum. They have also authored many influential architectural texts, and are behind furniture designs including the Queen Anne and Chippendale chairs.

The AIA president Elizabeth Chu Richter believes that what Denise and Bob have done for the profession far exceeds the completion of a great building or two. Through a lifetime of inseparable collaboration, they changed the way we look at buildings and cities. Anything that is great in architecture today has been influenced in one way or another by their work. The Gold Medal is the American Institute of Architects’ highest accolade and is awarded to individuals, whose work is expected to have a lasting influence on the theory and practice of architecture. Denise is only the second woman to win the prize in its 109-year history. 

 The AIA Gold Medal will be presented to Robert and Denise at the 2016 AIA National Convention in Philadelphia in May. Their names will be chiselled into the granite wall in the lobby of the AIA headquarters in Washington DC.

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