Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Pritzger Prize

American architect Thomas Mayne was named on Monday as the winner of the Pritzger Architecture Prize, the highest honor in architecture. He's the first American to win in 14 years. He and his firm, Morphosis, have been labeled over the years as idiosyncratic, iconoclastic, and inventive, but in a town famous for one-hit wonders, Mayne has not only been consistently good with his approach, but he's proven his buildings work. Lacking a signature style, like Frank Gehry, Mayne tends to favor exposed crossed atriums, light, technology, and even onamentation. He's currently most well known for the the Caltrans District 7 Headquarters in LA with the perforated mechanical "skin" that adjusts to light making the building almost transparent in the evening. He's also just completed the redesign of the Alaska State Capitol in Juno.

His next projects include the Cooper Union in Manhattan and the Olympic Village (should it be needed) in Hunters Point. He's a founder of the Southern California Institute of Architecture and teaches at UCLA. Gothamist on the award and some Mayne buildings.

And in other wacky architectural news, here's the scoop on the Chicago photography ban in Millennium Park. From Chicagoist.

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