The University of Notre Dame has recognized two individuals for their distinguished work in architecture and cultivation of the environment.
Architect Rob Krier, also known for his work as a painter, sculptor and educator, has been awarded the 2022 Richard H. Driehaus Prize. And author Wendell Berry has been named the winner of the 2022 Henry Hope Reed Award, given to a non-architect whose work cultivates “the traditional city, its architecture and art through writing, planning or promotion.”
Established in 2003, the $200,000 Richard H. Driehaus Prize is awarded to “a living architect whose work embodies the highest ideals of traditional and classical architecture in contemporary society, and creates a positive cultural, environmental, and artistic impact.” The award is named after Richard H. Driehaus, the founder and chair of Chicago-based Driehaus Capital Management LLC, who passed away last year.
Notre Dame presents the $50,000 Henry Hope Reed Award in conjunction with the Driehaus Prize to recognize “achievement in the promotion and preservation of those ideals among people who work outside the architecture field.” Henry Hope Reed was an influential architectural historian. Together, the two awards are among the most significant recognitions bestowed for classicism in the contemporary built environment.
Born in Luxembourg, Rob Krier studied architecture at the Technical University of Munich in Germany. Following that, he worked with Oswald Mathias Ungers in Cologne and Berlin and Frei Otto in Berlin and Stuttgart. He later opened his own firm in Vienna, where he also served as professor of architecture at Vienna University of Technology from 1976 to 1998.
Krier has designed buildings around the world, from large projects in Berlin to new towns in the Netherlands and residential projects in Spain.
His award citation reads, “Through his engagement with a variety of urban settings, clients and types of projects, Krier has generated a diverse oeuvre that is steeped in the particulars of specific places: always responsive to local cultures, built heritage and environmental issues. His work by him as an artist drives the poetics of his architecture and urbanism by him. Design, painting, sculpture, architecture and urbanism become an intense, singular art form, capable of inspiring people to understand themselves as being deeply rooted in their community and in the world.”
Stefanos Polyzoides, Driehaus Prize jury chair and the Francis and Kathleen Rooney Dean of Notre Dame’s School of Architecture, said of Krier, “His influence as a theorist has been pervasive. For the last 30 years, his published books and his extensive teaching and reading have attracted and influenced students and professionals throughout the world. ”
A prolific author and influential environmental conservation activist, Wendell Berry was born in Kentucky and still operates a farm in that state. He earned his BA and MA in English from the University of Kentucky. I have also studied under Wallace Stegner at Stanford.
His first novel, Nathan Coulterwas published in April 1960. But his most influential book was probably The Unsettling of America, in which Berry champions one of his favorite themes – the importance of small-scale agriculture for the preservation of land and culture.
He taught creative writing at the University of Kentucky for several years, joining a department that at the time included such celebrated writers as Guy Davenport and Gurney Norman.
Not only was Berry one of Kentucky’s most famous authors, he was a fearless advocate, willing to take on his alma mater. In a public protest several years ago over the University of Kentucky (UK) naming a new dorm for UK basketball players the “Wildcat Coal Lodge” in addition to what he saw as UK’s overemphasis on science, technology and engineering to the neglect of the arts and humanities, Berry said he was unwilling to be officially associated with the university any longer, and he pulled his personal papers from the UK’s archives.
Berry is the recipient of the National Humanities Medal, given to him by President Barack Obama in 2011. Other honors include the Ivan Sandrof Life Achievement Award by the National Book Critics Circle, the TS Eliot Prize, the Aiken Taylor Award for poetry, the John Hay Award of the Orion Society, and the Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.
His jury citation reads, “Over the years, humanity has increasingly encroached upon natural landscapes with little regard for the long-term urban and environmental impact. Berry has been a voice of conscience in advocating for the conservation of the miracle and the bounty that is nature, proposing a relationship between places and people that honors and protects both.”
Notre Dame said it was postponing a public presentation of the awards because of ongoing public health concerns from the Covid-19 pandemic.