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Balkrishna Doshi, Pritzker 2018


The 2018 Edition of the Pritzker Architecture Prize has awarded the work of the architect Balkrishna Doshi. His solid career over 60 years, practicing the art of architecture and demonstrating substantial contributions to humanity, have brought him international recognition through this award, known as the architecture’s highest honor.

The jury highlighted his exceptional architecture as reflected in over a hundred buildings he has realized, his commitment and his dedication to his country and the communities he has served, his influence as a teacher, and the outstanding example he has set for professionals and students around the world throughout his long career.

Doshi worked with two masters of the 20th century: Le Corbusier and Louis Kahn, who, without a doubt, influenced the early works of the Indian architect as can be seen in the robust forms of concrete which he employed. However, Doshi took the language of his buildings beyond these early models. With an understanding and appreciation of the deep traditions of India’s architecture, he united prefabrication and local craft and developed a vocabulary in harmony with the history, culture, local traditions and the changing times of his home country India.

Over the years, Balkrishna Doshi has always created an architecture that is serious, never flashy or a follower of trends. With a deep sense of responsibility and a desire to contribute to his country and its people through high quality, authentic architecture, he has created projects for public administrations and utilities, educational and cultural institutions, and residences for private clients, among others.

Doshi is acutely aware of the context in which his buildings are located. His solutions take into account the social, environmental and economic dimensions, and therefore his architecture is totally engaged with sustainability. Using patios, courtyards, and covered walkways, as in the case of the School of Architecture (1966, now part of CEPT), the Madhya Pradesh Electricity Board in Jabalpur (1979) and the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore (1992), Doshi has created spaces to protect from the sun, catch the breezes and provide comfort and enjoyment in and around the buildings.

Balkrishna Doshi constantly demonstrates that good architecture and urban planning must not only unite purpose and structure but must take into account climate, site, technique, and craft, along with a deep understanding and appreciation of the context in the broadest sense. Projects must go beyond the functional to connect with the human spirit through poetic and philosophical underpinnings.


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