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Pritzker  Prize

Isozaki wins Pritzker  Prize

Arata Isozaki, a prominent Japanese architect renowned for his versatility and transnational approach to design, has won his field’s highest accolade, the Pritzker Architecture Prize.

The 87-year-old will receive his coveted award, which consists of $100,000 and a bronze medallion, in May at the Palace of Versailles in France.

The jury praised Isozaki for surpassing “the framework of architecture to raise questions that transcend eras and borders”, and for his “profound knowledge of architectural history and theory, and embracing the avant-garde”.

It said in a statement: “He never merely replicated the status quo, but his search for meaningful architecture was reflected in his buildings that, to this day, defy stylistic categorisations.”

In a career that has spanned six decades so far, with more than 100 buildings around the world, Isozaki’s approach has constantly evolved. More so than style or materials, his work is characterised by a search for what architecture can contribute to society.

Isozaki’s work began locally as Japan rebuilt following the devastation of World War II, and Allied occupation. He designed many buildings in his hometown, before expanding to Osaka and the capital, Tokyo.

The 1980s saw Isozaki’s international reputation grow with his first overseas commission, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and other prominent buildings, including the Palau Sant Jordi, which was part of the setting for Barcelona’s 1992 Olympic Games.

Pritzker Architecture Prize

Founded in 1979 by the late Jay A Pritzker and his wife, Cindy, the Pritzker Architecture Prize honours a living architect or architects whose work combines talent, vision and commitment and who has produced “consistent and significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through the art of architecture”.

Previous winners of the coveted prize include India’s Balkrishna Doshi, Jorn Utzon who designed the Sydney Opera House, Oscar Niemeyer of Brazil and the British-Iraqi designer, Zaha Hadid.

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