The W Awards today announced this year's winners of the Moira Gemmill Prize for Emerging Architecture and MJ Long Prize for Excellence in Practice, after unveiling a shortlist of eight influential female architects in late February.
The awards program, led since 2012 by The Architectural Review and the Architect's Journal, aims to "raise the profile of women and non-binary people in architecture worldwide, inspiring change as a united voice of this global call for respect, diversity, and equality."
2023 MJ Long Prize for Excellence: Kirsten Gabriëls Webb of Sergison Bates
Kristen Gabriëls Webb is a native of Belgium and studied at the University of Applied Sciences in Hildesheim, Germany, before working in the Netherlands and joining Sergison Bates in 2011. She was eventually named an associate at the firm in 2014 and has since worked on various civic and residential projects in Belgium.
Gabriëls Webb was selected for her work on the firm’s De Korenbloem sheltered housing project in Kortrijk, Belgium. The project provides new accommodation for those suffering from early-onset dementia and includes the restoration of an extant art deco villa located on the grounds nearby.
“De Korenbloem stitches residents’ lives back into the town. It is an architecture that brokers new territory, casting aside preconceptions in the process of the design. 'Architecture can save lives' is one of those phrases you hear bandied about and is usually complete rubbish but here it really has,” the jury’s citation read. “Gabriëls Webb’s work challenges our expectations of what built architecture can be and the process by which we achieve it: there is something so important in the work she is doing.”
2023 winner of the Moira Gemmill Prize for Emerging Architecture: Viviana Pozzoli of Equipo de Arquitectura
Equipo de Arquitectura co-founder Viviana Pozzoli was named the 2023 winner of the Moira Gemmill Prize for Emerging Architecture. The award recognizes emerging architects under the age of 45 who are leading their own practice. Pozzili’s work has been widely published internationally and is often credited for its integration of sustainable design methods in the interest of creating buildings that respond to issues of economics, the environment, and sociology.
Placemaking is also very central in the firm’s many projects. Pozzilli founded Equipo de Arquitectura with Horacio Cherniavsky in 2017 and has lectured at the National University of Asunción in addition to being a key member of the Aqua Alta Collective. She completed her studies at the Nuestra Señora de la Asunción Catholic University in 2016 and has worked extensively in the Paraguayan capital since graduating.
This year's jury commented on Pozzoli's work explaining, "There is something very true and honest about the work Pozzoli is making, responding to the local climate and context, and with an impressive emphasis on daylight and air. The technologies that the practice is developing can be used by local communities without their input. It is a complete architecture, encompassing ecology, materiality, and research.”
The jury also highly commended Taller Capital co-founder Loreta Castro Reguera for the Moira Gemmill Prize category. They praised her work for tackling issues related to water systems, stating that their work “[utilizes] radical pragmatism to create useful resources for local people, which takes enormous courage.”
Learn more about this year's winners here.
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