That's a wrap for the third edition of the Blueprint Awards! Blueprint Magazine recently announced the winning projects during an award ceremony at the Bankside Vaults in London. This year attracted 400 competitive submissions from six continents, but the UK and the U.S. dominated.
For starters, the late Zaha Hadid was posthumously honored with the 2016 Blueprint Award for Architecture, as voted by the Blueprint community. Other winning designers include Grüntuch Ernst Architects for the Germany School Madrid as well as Kirsten Murray of Olson Kundig for the Gawker Media Headquarters in New York. Author and critic Alice Rawsthorn received the Blueprint Critical Thinking Award.
Scroll further down to see the winners.
Blueprint Award for Architecture: Zaha Hadid
“‘Blueprint had a long running relationship with Zaha, having commissioned her very first structure in the UK — a pavilion back in 1995,’ Blueprint Magazine Editor Johnny Tucker said. ‘Although she has left a wonderful legacy of buildings, as a Cardiffian, I’m also personally very sad that she never got build her opera house in the Welsh capital. She is a huge loss to the world of 21st century Architecture.’”
In an obituary in March, Blueprint contributing editor Herbert Wright wrote, “‘What an extraordinary force she was. She had an intense, tangible genius for design that has left its mark across our planet — elements from a better future, in the here and now.’”
Blueprint Award for Design: Fixperts
“Fixperts is a social project and open knowledge sharing platform founded by designers Daniel Charny and James Carrigan and now run by Charny, with the support of a growing number of experts, volunteers and champions. The project started with the idea that fixing is a valuable way to interact with the world. Drawing together teams of designers and filmmakers, in just six weeks Charny and Carrigan developed a pilot and fixperts.org launched with five films encouraging people to use the power of fixing to solve everyday problems. That was in September 2012. They soon discovered that people connected with the idea and wanted to get involved.”
Blueprint Award for Critical Thinking: Alice Rawsthorn
“Alice Rawsthorn is a critic who writes about design in the International New York Times. She is also a columnist for Frieze magazine and an author, whose latest book Hello World: Where Design Meets Life explores design’s influence on our lives: past, present and future...Alice Rawsthorn is a critic who writes about design in the International New York Times. She is also a columnist for Frieze magazine and an author, whose latest book Hello World: Where Design Meets Life explores design’s influence on our lives: past, present and future.”
Best Public Use Project with Privately Funded Winner: Zaha Hadid Architects, UK - Messner Mountain Museum, Mount Kronplatz, Italy
Project excerpt: “Embedded within the summit of Mount Kronplatz, the MMM explores mountaineering through its traditions and history”. Blueprint juror Amanda Levete cited the project having a ‘[b]eautiful relationship with mountainscape’, while fellow juror André Fu described it as ‘[a] bold and sculptural monument‘.”
Best Design Innovation Project Winner: Baumgartner + Uriu, USA - Apertures, Los Angeles Municipal Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Project excerpt: “Apertures is an immersive, experiential installation, installed in Los Angeles Municipal Gallery, that is designed to engage the visitor through sensors and sound feedback loops to experience their own ‘biorhythms’...‘This project is the proposal of a building as organism, challenging how architecture can interface with its users and its environment in a much more intuitive way,‘ says Baumgartner + Uriu. ‘This entails both the use of technology to augment its performance and a design aesthetic that is incongruous and can incorporate analogue features into a digital design process.’”
Best Product Winner: Christo Logan, USA - two.parts ceramic lighting series
Project excerpt: “The two.parts ceramic lighting series uses 3D-printed ceramic and clandestine LEDs to make a new kind of light. Each sculptural fixture is illuminated as if by an invisible bulb, inverting perceptions as the interior surfaces of the pendant become the light source. The lights combine the age-old techniques and qualities of ceramics, such as heat resistance and material warmth, with new-age technologies that can fabricate complex hollow structures.”
Best Small Project Winner: Davidson Rafailidis, USA - He, She & It, Buffalo, USA
Project excerpt: “He, She & It is a collection of three distinct buildings for three different spatial needs, collaged into a single structure. The 1500 sq ft building houses work spaces for a painter, a ceramist/silversmith, and a greenhouse. Grouped to form a cluster of three mono-pitched sheds, each space offers a unique atmosphere which differs radically from the others and reflects their respective uses. ‘Built with modest, low-cost materials and construction methods, the spatial arrangement offers a complex set of experiences that are rich at the spatial and textural scales; the interior world of the workspaces draws the users in and provides them with a retreat from the outside world,’ says Davidson Rafailidis.
Best Sustainable Project Winner: Grimshaw, UK - SUEZ Energy-from-Waste Facility, Suffolk, UK
Project excerpt: “SUEZ Energy-from-Waste Facility is a plant in Suffolk that will process waste for 25 years. It is a greener alternative to landfill waste disposal and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 75,000 tonnes per year. The plant currently processes 269,000 tonnes of waste which produces enough electricity for 30,000 homes. Says Grimshaw: ‘Creating a balance between industry, nature and community was a key design objective. The resulting architectural mass expresses a calm, ordered appearance with an exterior that reflects the sky with its coloured louvres and light-grey smoke stacks.’
Best Public Use Project - Public Funding Winner: Grüntuch Ernst Architects, Germany German School Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Project excerpt: “Replacing its previous location in the city centre, the new building for the German School Madrid in northern Madrid provides a large complex for its special educational programme and evening theatre performances and concerts...The architect says: ‘A school is more than a matrix of classrooms; it is the centre of the students’ living environment and shapes their understanding of both the built and natural worlds as well as their sociocultural experience. The spatial compositions and visual connections within the school promote a sense of group identification and intercultural exchange in order to carry on the tradition and success of the German School.‘”
Best Interior Project - Leisure Winner: Ian Schrager and Ian Schrager Company Design Team, with Rockwell Group and I.S.C. Design Studio, USA - The New York EDITION, New York, USA
Project excerpt: “Opened in May last year, The New York EDITION is a luxury hotel housed in an iconic 41-storey skyscraper dating from 1909 in the heart of midtown New York’s Flatiron District, moments from Madison Square Park...‘Much of this hotel embraces the building’s existing design but the old was offset with the new to add a downtown feel,’ explains Schrager. The lobby is clad in classic Venetian plasterwork and has a hand-forged, blackened steel fireplace, while a sculptural spiral staircase, a modern interpretation of those found in the grand mansions of Millionaire’s Row, leads to the second-floor restaurant. The restaurant is arranged into three intimate dining rooms, with original herringbone oak floors, mahogany wainscoting on the walls and rich velvet chairs inspired by the vibrant colours of the Dutch masters.’”
Best Interior Project - Work Winner: Kirsten Murray, Olson Kundig, USA - Gawker Media Headquarters, New York, USA
Project excerpt: “Housed within an historic 120-year-old Union Square building in New York, the new 43,000 sq ft headquarters for Gawker Media is designed to reflect the company’s core values of egalitarianism, transparency and provocative journalism. It is located in what was once New York’s epicentre of fashion, the so-called ‘Ladies’ Mile’. The two-storey space reveals the building’s original steel structure and brick walls, while adding new architectural insertions to juxtapose the past and present. Soft white, day-lit ‘working salons’ are surrounded by a dark spine of blackened steel, with warm ink tones to the decor and dark wood joinery.”
Best Non-Public Use Project - Residential Winner: Marcio Kogan, Brazil - Jungle House, São Paulo, Brazil
Project excerpt: “Located in the dense rainforest near the coast adjacent to São Paulo, Jungle House is a three-storey modern home that is designed to organically connect the architecture with nature. The main volume of the house is elevated from the ground and seems built into the landscape, projecting out from the mountainous topography and touching the ground with only two columns. The organisation of the house is inverted, with living areas on the roof and bedrooms below.”
Best Non-Public Project - Commercial Winner: Zaha Hadid Architects, UK - Dominion Office Building, Moscow, Russia
Project excerpt: “Located in Moscow’s Sharikopodshipnikovskaya Street, the Dominion Office Building is one of the first projects to be built for the growing creative and IT sectors in this primarily industrial and residential district in the southeast of the city. It is conceived as a series of vertically stacked plates off-set at each level with connected, curved elements.”
Read more about the 2016 winners and jurors here. You can also check out last year's winners in the link below.
All photos courtesy of 2016 Blueprint Awards.
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