Jean Nouvel takes Pritzker Prize

French architect Jean Nouvel has been chosen as the 2008 Laureate of the Pritzker Architecture Prize.The formal ceremony for what has come to be known as one of architecture’s highest honors will be held on June 2 in Washington,D.C. at the Library of Congress.

At that time, a $100,000 grant and a bronze medallion will be bestowed on the 62-year old architect.

Nouvel who came to international attention with the completion of his Institut du Monde Arabe (usually referred to as IMA) in 1987 as one of President Francois Mitterand’Grands Travaux in Paris. has several projects in the United States, including the Guthrie

In Europe, some of his other important works are the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art (Paris 1994), the Branly Museum(Paris 2006), the Agbar Tower (Barcelona 2005), a Courthouse (Nantes 2000), a Cultural and Conference Centre (Lucerne 2000), an Opera House (Lyon 1993), and Expo 2002(Switzerland).

Although the bulk of his work is in France, he has designed projects all over the world.

In announcing the jury’s choice, Thomas J. Pritzker, chairman of The Hyatt Foundation, quoted from the jury citation, “Of the many phrases that might be used to describe the career of architect Jean Nouvel, foremost are those that emphasize his courageous pursuit of new ideas and his challenge of accepted norms in order to stretch the boundaries of the field.”

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