Page N4.2 . 10 January 2001                     
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    AIA Announces Highest Honors


    In "The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Architects and Architecture," Dennis Sharp wrote that Graves was known for a "wide-ranging eclecticism in which he abstracted historical forms and emphasized the use of color."

    Sharp continues: "Although influenced by the fundamentalists in developing an architectural language, Graves has become an opponent of modern works who uses humor as an integral part of his architecture. Indeed, many of his recent designs seem to celebrate architectural pastiche and kitsch."

    The AIA Gold Medal has been awarded annually since 1907, and Graves joins such luminaries as Louis Sullivan (1944), Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1960), Richard Buckminster Fuller (1970), and, this past year, Ricardo Legorreta.

    Architecture Firm Award

    Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck Architecture has as its stated goal "to do a common thing uncommonly well." Over the past 40 years the firm has evolved from designing small, private commissions to more prominent public and institutional works. They have held design quality and client aspirations paramount.

    The AIA awards this honor to firms in which "collaboration among individuals of the firm has been a driving force." The 43-person Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck credits its teaching studio mode for its longevity and success.

    Educating and mentoring the next generation of practitioners is a major focus at the firm, and the office is organized to enhance lifetime learning. Experienced professionals and talented interns work side by side, encouraging a "cross pollination" of ideas that has proven to be an effective and motivating mentoring environment.

    The firm has received national AIA Honor Awards for five diverse projects: a historic restoration; a factory; an advertising agency; a retail store; and a complex urban project weaving together a parking garage, public transit facility, and a child day-care center.

    The AIA has given firm awards since 1962. Past recipients include Shepley Bulfinch Richardson Abbott (1973), Esherick Homsey Dodge & Davis (1986), and James Stewart Polshek and Partners (1992).

    Topaz Medallion Winner

    In awarding the 2001 Topaz Medallion to Lee Copeland, the AIA described him as a "major force in architectural education and among very best practitioners of urban design and master planning." Copeland is former dean of the University of Washington College of Architecture and Urban Planning and the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Fine Arts.

    The Topaz Medallion is awarded jointly by the AIA and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) to an individual who has an outstanding record of contributions to architectural education.

    In making the award, jury chairman Gene C. Hopkins, FAIA, commented, "Mr. Copeland epitomizes the underlying principles of the Topaz Medallion. Through his dedication to the practice of architecture and his role as an educator, he has left a legacy of distinguished students who are now our clients, professional colleagues, and key leaders in the academic setting. Mr. Copeland's example is a remarkable model for the profession."

    In support of his former colleague's nomination, Thomas Ehrlich, a senior scholar at The Carnegie Foundation, wrote: "I came to marvel at his extraordinary abilities as an architectural educator. I would listen to students discuss the impact that his teaching had on their work, and come away amazed by the quiet power of his influence."

    Copeland has worked in both education and practice, thus playing a major role in shaping urban form and the "urban formers." He has taught, mentored, or collaborated with virtually every urban designer in the Northwest. He now practices with Weinstein Copeland Architects in Seattle.

    The Topaz Medallion has been awarded every year since 1976. Previous recipients have included Colin Rowe (1985), Charles Moore (1989), and Denise Scott-Brown (1996).

    B.J. Novitski is managing editor of ArchitectureWeek and author of Rendering Real and Imagined Buildings.



    ArchWeek Photo

    San Juan Capistrano (California) Library, by Michael Graves.
    David Owen

    ArchWeek Photo

    Michael C. Carlos Museum of Art and Archaeology, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, by Michael Graves.
    Photo: Steven Brooke, Steven Brooke Studios

    ArchWeek Photo

    Malibu (California) Beach House, by Michael Graves.
    Photo: Peter Malinowsky/ InSite Architectural Photography

    ArchWeek Photo

    Kautz Plaza, University of Iowa, by Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck Architecture.
    Photo: Farshid Assassi/ Assassi Productions

    ArchWeek Photo

    Des Moines firm Herbert Lewis Kruse Blunck Architecture has won the 2001 AIA Architecture Firm Award.
    Photo: Farshid Assassi/ Assassi Productions

    ArchWeek Photo

    Meredith Corporate Expansion, by HLKB.
    Photo: Farshid Assassi

    ArchWeek Photo

    Athletic Offices and Weight Training Facility, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, by HLKB.
    Photo: Farshid Assassi/ Assassi Productions

    ArchWeek Photo

    M.C. Ginsberg Objects of Art, West Des Moines, Iowa, by HLKB.
    Photo: Farshid Assassi/ Assassi Productions


    Click on thumbnail images
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