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Six projects receive 2019 Aga Khan Award for Architecture

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Prince Karim Aga Khan and State Counsellor of the Republic of Tatarstan Mintimer Shaimiev, with the recipients of the 2019 Aga Khan Award for Architecture. Photo: AKDN

 The winners will share $1 million prizes which recognizes all parties involved in the conception, design, and realization of a project

News Desk

The six winning projects of the 2019 Aga Khan Award for Architecture (AKAA) were acclaimed on Friday (Sept 13) at a ceremony held at Kazan’s Musa Jalil State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre, Tatarstan.

Tatarstan State Counsellor Mintimer Shaimiev accompanied the Aga Khan in presiding over the ceremony, according to a statement posted on the official website of the Aga Khan Development Network.

The 2019 Aga Khan Award for Architecture Master Jury’s statement noted that for architecture to maintain its relevance in relation to today’s challenges, it is imperative that the profession reposition itself to address human, societal and environmental challenges.

Participants and audience of the Aga Khan Awards for Architecture at Kazan’s Musa Jalil State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre, Tatarstan. Photo: AKDN

Reflecting that need for repositioning, the jury stated that it had sought to select projects in this Award Cycle that question the conventional practice of the profession and, more importantly, set in place inspirational and ingenious pathways through which architects can take on societal problems and engage with them seriously.

Moreover, “the Award not only rewards architects but also identifies municipalities, builders, clients, master artisans and engineers who have played important roles in the realization of a project,” the statement read.

The six projects as selected by a master jury are: Revitalisation of Muharraq, Bahrain; Arcadia Education Project, South Kanarchor, Bangladesh; Palestinian Museum, Birzeit; Tatarstan’s Public Spaces Development Programme; Alioune Diop University Teaching and Research Unit, Bambey, Senegal; and Wasit Wetland Centre, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.

The six Award recipients, spanning three continents, include an urban heritage intervention, a floating school, a national museum, an ambitious programme to introduce public spaces across hundreds of localities, a university’s classrooms and halls, and an ecological centre.

The award, established in 1977, by the Aga Khan aims to identify, encourage and celebrate projects that addressed the needs and aspirations of communities of Muslim societies, respond to their cultural needs.

The Aga Khan Award for Architecture’s mandate is different from that of most other architecture prizes: It not only rewards architects but also identifies municipalities, builders, clients, master artisans and engineers who have played important roles in the realisation of a project. Prizes have been given to projects across the world, from France to China.  Architects and planners from New York to Dhaka have received one of 128 awards to date.

The winners will share $1 million prizes which recognizes all parties involved in the conception, design, and realization of a project.

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