David Chipperfield Laureate of The Pritzker Architecture Prize 2023
January 4, 2024

Tuesday, March 7, 2023, The Pritzker Architecture Prize announces Sir David Alan Chipperfield CH has been selected as the 52nd Winner of The Pritzker Architecture Prize 2023. The Pritzker Award recognizes talent, vision, and commitment, continuously resulting in significant contributions to humanity and the built environment through architecture. David Chipperfield's career has been characterized by long-term thinking, rigor, and consistency in a work that has appropriately integrated and balanced the two things.

Sir David Alan Chipperfield, photo courtesy of Tom Welsh

Sir David Alan Chipperfield, photo courtesy of Tom Welsh

The 2023 Jury Citation of the Laureate "This commitment to an architecture of understated but transformative civic presence and the definition—even through private commissions—of the public realm is always done with austerity, avoiding unnecessary moves and steering clear of trends and fashions, all of which is a most relevant message to our contemporary society. Such a capacity to distill and perform meditated design operations is a dimension of sustainability that has not been obvious in recent years: sustainability as pertinence eliminates the superfluous and is the first step to creating structures able to last, physically and culturally."

"We do not see an instantly recognizable David Chipperfield building in different cities, but different David Chipperfield buildings designed specifically for each circumstance. Each asserts its presence even as its buildings create new connections with the neighborhood. His architectural language balances consistency with the fundamental design principles and flexibility towards the local cultures…The work of David Chipperfield unifies European classicism, the complex nature of Britain, and even the delicateness of Japan. It is the fruition of cultural diversity." Continue The 2023 Jury Citation of the Laureate.

Tom Pritzker, Chairman of the Hyatt Foundation, also said, "He is assured without hubris, consistently avoiding trendiness to confront and sustain the connections between tradition and innovation, serving history and humanity. While his works are elegantly masterful, he measures the achievements of his designs by social and environmental welfare to enhance the quality of life for all of civilization."

Inagawa Cemetery Chapel and Visitor Center by Sir David Alan Chipperfield CH, photo courtesy of Keiko SasaokaInagawa Cemetery Chapel and Visitor Center by Sir David Alan Chipperfield CH, photo courtesy of Keiko Sasaoka

Sir David Alan Chipperfield CH, born in 1953 in London. After graduating from Kingston School of Art in 1976 and the Association School of Architecture in London in 1980, having more than four decades of work, David Chipperfield is' doing his profession' by balancing relevance and status to his works. In each of his projects, with various cases, he skillfully selects the tools that play an important role in the project rather than those that may only celebrate the architect as an artist.

David Chipperfield's works are characterized by elegance, restraint, timelessness, vivid compositions and fine details. On its buildings, clarity, surprise, sophisticated contextuality, and a confident presence exude. Maintaining a meticulous yet consistent design quality, David Chipperfield works on various building types ranging from public civil buildings to commercial, residential, and retail structures. According to David Chipperfield, the work must stand the test of time. Besides that work must be responsible for action, beauty, and be faithful to the three essential Vitruvian qualities: firmity , utility , and venustas (strength, usefulness, beauty). As one of the real contributions, Chipperfield founded the Fundación RIA in 2017. Chipperfield sponsors research, promotes ideas, and harmonizes future development that encourages locally focused protection of the natural and artificial environment linked to global challenges along Ría de Arousa.

On this occasion, Chipperfield gave a statement. "I take this award as an encouragement to continue to direct my attention not only to the substance of architecture and its meaning but also to the contribution that we can make as architects to address the existential challenges of climate change and societal inequality. We know that, as architects, we can have a more prominent and engaged role in creating a more beautiful world and a fairer and more sustainable one. We must rise to this challenge and help inspire the next generation to embrace this responsibility with vision and courage."

Chipperfield adds, "As an architect, I'm the guardian of meaning, memory, and heritage. Cities are historical records, and architecture after a certain moment is a historical record. Cities are dynamic, so they don't just sit there. They evolve. And in that evolution, we take buildings away and replace them with others. We choose ourselves, and the concept of only protecting the best is not enough. It's also a matter of protecting character and qualities that reflect the richness of the evolution of a city."

River and Rowing Museum, photo courtesy of Richard BryantRiver and Rowing Museum, photo courtesy of Richard Bryant

This award results from the consistency of David Chipperfield as an architect who continues to preserve the meaning, memory, and heritage of architectural, historical records as concepts in his work. Not forgetting to continue to direct attention not only to the substance of architecture but also to the contributions that can be made as an architect to address the existential challenges of climate change and societal inequality and engage in creating not only a more beautiful world but also a more just and sustainable world.

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