Visionary urbanist scoops Australia's most prestigious annual architectural award
Melborune architect, urban designer and educator Graeme Gunn has won the 2011 Gold Medal from the Royal Australia Institute of Architects (RAIA). The son of a builder, Gunn began working with the practice of Grounds, Romberg and Boyd and now heads the Melbourne-based practice, Gunn Dyring. His most celebrated building is the brutalist concrete Plumbers and Gasfitters Union office building in Victoria Street, Melbourne, which in 2007 received the RAIA's 25-Year Award for Outstanding Architecture.
Among the other awards announced in Perth last night was the President's Prize, this year given to Janet Holmes à Court in recognition of her role as last year's commissioner for the Australian entry at the Venice Architecture Biennale. Marcus White, of Melbourne practice Harrison & White who is also an academic, won the inaugural emerging architecture prize for the breadth of his contribution to the profession.
The Neville Quarry architectural education prize went to Anna Rubbo, an associate professor at the University of Sydney and co-founder of Architectural Theory Review. The leadership in sustainability prize was given to Paul Pholeros. Pholeros was founder of Healthabitat which, for more than a quarter-century, has sought to improve the health of Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders through improvements to their living environment.