Francis Kéré Wins the 2022 Pritzker Prize, and Other News

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Diebedo Francis Kéré. Photography by Erik Petersen, courtesy Tippet Rise Art Center

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Francis Kéré Wins the 2022 Pritzker Prize 

Much of Diebedo Francis Kéré’s attention as a professional architect has been directed toward nations in West Africa: Benin, Mali, Togo, Mozambique, and his home country Burkina Faso. His devotion to uplifting local communities in the region helped the Berlin-based talent land this year’s Pritzker Prize, widely considered the architecture profession’s most prestigious accolade. “His buildings, for and with communities, are directly of those communities—in their making, their materials, their programs, and their unique characters,” the jury wrote. “They’re tied to the ground on which they sit and to the people who sit within them. They have presence without pretense and an impact shaped by grace.” 

Many of those buildings have taken the form of community hubs, especially schools, completed using sustainable and eco-sensible construction methods in underserved areas. (The Naaba Belem Gouda Secondary School, named after Kéré’s father, will address his hometown Gando’s long-standing need for secondary educational resources.) Other significant works include his Xylem pavilion at Tippet Rise Art Center, in Montana, a sinuous structure made of local pine that embodies the grandeur of its surroundings. He was also selected to design the 2017 Serpentine Pavilion, which drew inspiration from a tree he spotted in Gando. 

“I am hoping to change the paradigm, push people to dream, and undergo risk,” Kéré said in a statement. “It’s not because you are rich that you should waste material. It’s not because you are poor that you should not try to create quality. Everyone deserves quality, everyone deserves luxury, and everyone deserves comfort. We’re interlinked and concerns in climate, democracy, and scarcity are concerns for us all.”

Rendering of the Ursa by Arquitectonica in the Miami Design District

Arquitectonica and Daniel Arsham bring the Miami Design District an art-filled building. 

The Miami Design District is opening its first office tower—one befitting of its surroundings. Local firm Arquitectonica was tapped to lead the project, a 15-floor structure made of gridded concrete that offers a stark juxtaposition to the neighborhood’s glass aesthetic. In line with the Design District’s artistic DNA, Snarkitecture founder Daniel Arsham was commissioned for site-specific artworks and custom furniture in the lobby that resembles his recent flirtation with stone-age forms. “The building will mark the western gateway to the Miami Design District in a design that combines Miami’s outdoor living with a boutique office building,” says Raymond Fort, a senior associate at Arquitectonica. “The District not only has one of the most impressive collections of art and architecture, but also is lined with a stunning native landscape palette throughout.”

Lauren Halsey will create an Egypt-inspired structure for the Met’s roof commission.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has tapped Lauren Halsey to create this year’s roof garden commission. Halsey, who hails from South Central Los Angeles, will create a full-scale structure that explores connections to Egyptian symbolism, utopian architecture, and contemporary artistic expressions such as tagging. “It’s a construction project that we’re managing that will exist within the context of the Met,” Halsey told the New York Times. “It’s a remix of and sampling of Pharaonic architectural symbols—the sphinx, columns, pavers.” The installation, on view May 17–Oct. 23, will travel to South Central L.A. after it closes at the Met. 

The South Sudanese photographer Atong Atem wins the inaugural La Prairie art award.

The inaugural La Prairie art award, which honors Australian women, has been given to Atong Atem, a South Sudanese photographer whose family migrated to Melbourne during her childhood. Atem, who cites activist photographer Hoda Afshar among her inspirations, creates subversive self-portraits marked by riotous bursts of color and vibrant costumes. As part of the prize, the Art Gallery of New South Wales will spend $50,000 acquiring the artist’s work and fund a $30,000 residency in Zurich this summer that will include her attending Art Basel. 

Fendi Casa furniture at the estate of Xavier Corberó. Photography by Andrea Ferrari

Fendi Casa taps a star-studded roster of collaborators for its latest furniture collection.

For its latest furniture collection, Fendi Casa teamed with a global roster of creatives including Piero Lissoni, Dimore Studio, Marcel Wanders, and Cristina Celestino. “It’s more eclectic and in line with our collections for men and women, who I would imagine living in these spaces,” says Silvia Venturini Fendi, the maison’s creative director of menswear and accessories. “Everything is very organic and aligned with our DNA.” Among the new offerings is the Fun modular sofa by Atelier Oï, which features a gridded design to create a seating landscape, and a series of bamboo outdoor pieces by Piero Lissoni with hemp upholstery. Fendi photographed the collection at the Barcelona estate of Catalan sculptor Xavier Corberó, a setting that Fendi Casa chief executive Alberto Da Passano says “emphasizes the values of identity, creativity, and craftsmanship that have always distinguished [the brand’s] collections.” 

Chef Daniel Boulud’s Sunday Supper Citymeals gala returns after a pandemic hiatus. 

After a year hiatus during the height of the pandemic, acclaimed chef Daniel Boulud’s Sunday Supper “black tie and blue jeans” gala returned this past weekend to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Citymeals. In total, $960,000 was raised for the organization that delivers meals to people in need. “Sunday Supper has always been integral to our work,” says Beth Shapiro, executive director of Citymeals. “Daniel’s been on the board for over two decades, and we put 100% of the donations we receive toward meal preparation and delivery. Daniel and his team did not stop when the pandemic started. They helped us deliver over 280,000 meals to isolated, older New Yorkers. It was possible because of his devotion—and the devotion of Marc Holliday, who we are honoring today.” 

Olympia on Tour by 100Architects. Photography by Rex Zhou

Today’s attractive distractions:

This Manchester street is so haunted that new residents need to sign a waiver. 

Scammer socialite Anna “Delvey” Sorokin will soon be deported from the U.S.

In China, a vibrant surrealist playground aims to reduce screen time among kids.

There’s an entire internet of options beyond what Google Search is showing you.

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