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Frei Otto, Pritzker 2015

ON351 - MAR/2015

The Jury of the Pritzker Prize, chaired by Lord Peter Palumbo, announced its verdict a few weeks ago somewhat ahead of time owing to the unexpected death of the award-winner, the German architect and engineer Frei Otto.

Born in Chemnitz in 1925, noteworthy among his principal works are the Federal Germany Pavilion at the Montreal 1967 Expo, the roof of the Munich 1972 Olympic Stadium or the gridshell of the Mannheim Multihalle in 1974.

In its official announcement, the Jury emphasised Otto’s relationship with nature and the natural processes. His interest in using the minimum amount of material as well as in energy efficiency made of Frei Otto one of the pioneers of sustainability in architecture.

His biography also reveals his connections to research and teaching, as accredited by the almost 30 years he spent as a professor at the universities of Stuttgart, Harvard and MIT.

Among his last built works are the pavilion for the Hannover Expo 2000 designed together with Shigeru Ban, Pritzker Prize-winner in 2014.


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