Grace Farms wins international architecture award
NEW CANAAN — Grace Farms is reaching levels of international fame. The Grace Farms Foundation has been awarded the 2014-15 biennial Mies Crown Hall Americas Prize that recognizes the best works of architecture built in the Americas.
Grace Farms was singled out for its River Building, designed by SANAA, an architectural firm based in Tokyo, Japan.
“It is an honor that the distinguished MCHAP jury recognized Grace Farms’ new kind of public space created by Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, our architectural partners of SANAA,” said foundation President Sharon Prince, in a statement. “Starting with this stunning natural setting, we wanted to create a space that would communicate a sense of grace and peace for all — a place that would break down barriers between people and create new and unexpected outcomes. We are grateful for SANAA and our entire project team’s visionary work.”
In July, Grace Farms was nominated for the award created by the Illinois Institute of Technology College of Architecture, Dean Wiel Arets.
The foundation was recently presented with the award at the 2016 MCHAP Symposium and Award Dinner at S.R. Crown Hall in Chicago. On Oct. 19, Sejima and Nishizawa, founders of SANAA, were also recognized and named the MCHAP chairmen at IIT Architecture Chicago for the upcoming academic year. They received $50,000 to go toward research and publication.
The River Building, the main structure on Grace Farms, is a winding, covered walkway that houses five pavilions. Made of wood, glass and a pressed stone walkway, the structure is designed to blend in with the nature around it.
“We didn’t want the building to dominate the space,” said Prince in a July interview after Grace Farms was nominated for the MCHAP award. “Instead, we wanted to create a space that merged with the landscape.”
The building was chosen out of seven finalists, including one other from the United States.