And the winner is...Alejandro Aravena! The much anticipated winner of the sought-after Priztker Prize was announced just minutes ago by Tom Pritzker.
The executive director of the Santiago-based Elemental is the first ever Pritzker Laureate from Chile. Some of his most recent noted works include: the Innovation Center UC – Anacleto Angelini, the Writer’s Cabin for the Jan Michalski Foundation, and the Ayelén School in Chile. A number of his works have been highly praised for their energy efficiency and for their thoughtful layouts which "show how architecture at its best can improve people's lives."
Mr. Pritzker said, “The jury has selected an architect who deepens our understanding of what is truly great design. Alejandro Aravena has pioneered a collaborative practice that produces powerful works of architecture and also addresses key challenges of the 21st century. His built work gives economic opportunity to the less privileged, mitigates the effects of natural disasters, reduces energy consumption, and provides welcoming public space. Innovative and inspiring, he shows how architecture at its best can improve people’s lives.”
Aravena, who has also been appointed as the Director of the Venice Architecture Biennale 2016, said of the win:
“Looking backwards, we feel deeply thankful. No achievement is individual. Architecture is a collective discipline. So we think, with gratitude, of all the people who contributed to give form to a huge diversity of forces at play. Looking into the future we anticipate Freedom! The prestige, the reach, the gravitas of the prize is such that we hope to use its momentum to explore new territories, face new challenges, and walk into new fields of action. After such a peak, the path is unwritten. So our plan is not to have a plan, face the uncertain, be open to the unexpected. Finally, looking at the present, we are just overwhelmed, ecstatic, happy. It's time to celebrate and share our joy with as many people as possible.”