The Stirling - RIBA Prize
The Stirling RIBA ( Royal Institute of British Architects ) prize is the most prestigious prize in architecture presented for excellence within the profession.
The Royal Institute of British Architects were formed in 1834 by prominent architects of the day and given a Royal Charter in 1837.
The foundation headquarters is situated at 66, Portland Place in London and houses the world's most important and extensive architectural library.
The 1930's building, which is now a grade I listed building, was designed by architect George Grey Wornum.
66, Portland Place, London.
The Stirling prize was first awarded in 1996 and get's it's name from Scots architect Sir James Stirling ( 1926 - 1992), one of Britain's most prolific architects from the British Modern Movement during the 1950's, famous, amongst other things, for his work at Canary Wharf in London, The Bibliotheque de France in Paris and the Kyoto Centre in Japan.
The prize came into being as Britain was lagging behind in the field of modern architecture.
The great Modernism movement which started in the 1920's with greats such as La Corbusier flourished until the onset of WWII.
Since the war Britain's Brutalism architecture of the 1960's and the Post, Super and Neo Modernism styles of the 70's and 80's were winning no prizes for Britain's up and coming young architects.
The British people had become complacent about their Traditional and Contempory designs until such greats of the architectural world such as Norman Foster and David Chipperfield began showing them their High - Tec and Futuristic designs.
Architecture had begun a new wave and more importantly a new interest in Britain.The British people began to take great interest in their cities and buildings and began to relish the new up and coming arhitects of the day with their contextual designs of form and shape made from glass, steel and concrete.
Today architecture, once more, plays a great part in the people of Britain's everyday life, with the famous architects of the day being household names known to most people.
The Stirling RIBA prize, presented annually since 1996 is now one of the most watched events on British television generating an audience of millions.
The prize winning buildings and their architects since 1996 have been -
THE FIRST STIRLING - RIBA PRIZE WINNER.
1996 - The Centenary Building, Salford Univesity, U.K - James Hooder.
1997 - The Music School, Stuttgart, Germany - Michael Wilford.
1998 - Imperial War Museum, Duxford, UK - Norman Foster.
1999 - Lord's Media Building, Lord's cricket Ground, UK - Future Systems.
2000 - Peckham Library, London, UK - Alsop + Stormer.
2001 - The Magna Centre, Rotherham, U.K - Wilkinson Eyre.
2002 - Gateshead Millenium Bridge, Gateshead, UK - Wilkinson Eyre + Gifford.
2003 - Laban, Deptford, London, UK - Herzog + de Mueron.
2004 - 30 St Mary Axe ( The Gherkin) London, UK - Norman Foster.
2005 - The Scottish Parliament Building, Edinburgh, Scotland - EMBT + RMJM.
2006 - Barajas Airport Terminal Building, Madrid, Spain - Richard Rogers.
2007 - The Marbach Museum, Marbach, Germany - David Chipperfield.
2008 - Accordia Housing Complex, Cambridge, UK - Feilden Clegg Bradley.
2009 - Maggies Centre, London, UK - Rogers, Stirk + Harbour.
2010 - The MAXXI, Rome, Italy - Zaha Hadid.
2011 - Evelyn Grace Academy, Brixton, London - Zaha Hadid Architects.
The 2010 winner was Iraqui born architect Zaha Hadid who won with her super modernist building the MAXXI in Rome, Italy.
Ten years in the building ( 1998 - 2008) this contemporary modern design built to house, as it's name suggests ( Modern Art + Roman numerals for 21), art from the 21st century. The building had to not only look right in amongst a city of a thousand other architectural masterpieces, but had to be able to show off the 21st century artwork contained within, without the building overpowing them and being the star of the show in it's own right.
The large windows which look out onto the rest of the city, bringing the old acrhitecture of the rest of the city inside, flood the building with natural light, giving the modern and futuristic artwork a natural spotlight .
The sleek lines of the building's wide walkways and stairways guide the visitor towards the art work which is arranged along high, curved walls within a modern, elegant style.
Hadid won from six finalists in the competition, which this year contained 3 museums, 2 schools and a private house, along with other architectural greats of the industry such as David Chipperfield and Rick Mather.
MAXXI, ROME, ITALY
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© D.B.Bellamy.October, 2010.
Images courtesy of nico86roma, skip88 and Sue Wallace, wikimedia commons.