David Chipperfield Architects wins RIBA Stirling prize

The Museum of Modern Literature in Marbach am Neckar, Germany, designed by David Chipperfield Architects has won the 12th RIBA Stirling Prize.This is the first time a building designed by David Chipperfield Architects has won the prize.

The presentation of the UK's premier architectural award took place at a glittering award ceremony on Saturday 6 October at the Roundhouse, London and was televised live on Channel 4.

The judges commented:

" In a suitably commemorative manner the building forms a small Acropolis attached to the National Schiller Museum on a ridge overlooking the valley of the River Neckar. The entrance sequence is brilliant. The visitor crosses an open terrace overlooking the valley, negotiates a series of shallow steps to enter the generous portal formed in the colonnade, and then enters through giant hardwood doors. A staircase descends to the collections with their required diminishing lighting levels. It is at this moment of descent that the building shows its pedigree – a sense of a progression to somewhere beyond, combined with a rich but selective palette of materials and illuminated with subdued top lighting. The route concludes in the permanent collection. Here glass cases containing original manuscripts form a magical flickering landscape. There is a particular theatricality about this space, as though the reflections, refractions and multiple shadows from the small intense lights collectively represent the soul of the German imagination."

Sunand Prasad, RIBA president, announced the winner and Kieran Long, editor of The Architects' Journal presented David Chipperfield with the prize and a cheque for £20,000.

The Museum of Modern Literature beat off stiff competition from five other contenders. These were: America's Cup Building , Valencia, Spain - David Chipperfield Architects; Casa da Musica , Porto, Portugal - Office for Metropolitan Architecture with Arup-AFA; Dresden Station Redevelopment , Dresden, Germany - Foster + Partners; The Savill Building , Windsor - Glenn Howells Architects and the Young Vic Theatre , London - Haworth Tompkins.

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