Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) recognizes Brigitte Shim and A. Howard Sutcliffe as this year's 2021 Gold Medal Award recipients. Founders of the Toronto-based architecture and interior design firm Shim-Sutcliffe Architects, the annual award is the highest honor bestowed to individuals for their long-standing contributions to Canadian architecture. Shim and Sutcliffe have also won fifteen Governor Generals Awards and the AIA National Honor Award on top of other design accolades.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica, Shim emigrated to Canada in 1965, and Sutcliffe was born in Yorkshire, England, and emigrated to Canada in 1964. Shim and Sutcliffe met at the University of Waterloo, where they both received degrees in environmental studies and architecture. Since their first collaboration in 1983, both architects have established themselves as prominent architects in Canada and are highly recognized worldwide. After founding their practice in 1994, their penchant for architectural details and craft is married with their organic sensibilities and elegant interpretations of residential and commercial projects. "Shim and Sutcliffe are unwavering design advocates," notes the RAIC.
"The poetic quality and independence of their design work, their thoughtful and holistic consideration of site, materiality, typologies, the senses, and their inventiveness have made Shim and Sutcliffe exemplars of architectural practice in Canada," writes Phyllis Lambert, Founding Director Emeritus of the Canadian Centre for Architecture. "To me, it is clear that they are abundantly worthy of being awarded the Gold Medal of the RAIC and stand as strong exponents of Canadian values."
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