Architect Alejandro Aravena was selected as the 2016 Pritzker Architecture Prize winner, becoming one of its youngest recipients and the first Chilean to be presented with what some hail as the Nobel Prize of architecture.
Lauded for reviving the socially engaged architect, 48-year-old Aravena won the jury over with his repertory of designs that provide economic opportunity to the less privileged, promote energy conservation, and alleviate the effects of natural disasters.
Characteristic of Aravena’s work with his Santiago-based studio ELEMENTAL is the construction of innovative and low-cost social housing units that are deliberately half-finished, allowing future residents the chance to flesh out the details of their homes according to their priorities, and providing them with a sense of ownership and investment—a formerly unthinkable feat in government-funded housing.
Aravena will receive a $100,000 grant and bronze medallion in an awards ceremony at the United Nations Headquarters in New York this spring.
Alejandro Aravena is also the Director of the Venice Architecture Biennale 2016, titled “Reporting from the Front,” set to open in May 2016.
Txt: Julia Ardila
Watch the 2016 Announcement Video :