The American Academy of Arts and Letters has named landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh the recipient of the 2010 Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture. The announcement of the award, given since 1955 to designers who have "contributed to architecture as an art form," couldn't have been timelier: April has been designated as "National Landscape Architecture Month" by the American Society of Landscape Architects.
Van Valkenburgh—whose body of work includes the green roof at the ASLA's headquarters, campus projects for numerous universities, the section of Pennsylvania Avenue that spans the White House, and public parks in a number of cities—is a longtime professor at Harvard's Graduate School of Design and the lead principal of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, which has offices in Brooklyn, N.Y., and Cambridge, Mass.
The academy has also named the recipients of its Academy Awards in Architecture. Stephen Cassell and Adam Yarinsky of New York's Architecture Research Office and Michael Meredith and Hilary Sample of MOS, which has offices in New Haven, Conn., and Cambridge, have been recognized for work that is characterized by a strong personal direction. Michael Sorkin, an educator, practitioner, and author, has been recognized for his architectural criticism.
All six winners, chosen from a group of 50 architects nominated by academy members, will receive their awards at a ceremony in May.
2010 selection committee: Billie Tsien (chair), Henry Cobb, Hugh Hardy, Steven Holl, Laurie Olin, Tod Williams.