The AIA and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ASCA) jointly awarded architect Peter Eisenman, FAIA, the AIA Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education, given to individuals who have spent at least a decade contributing to the field of architectural education. Eisenman is the founder and principal of New York–based Eisenman Architects, and has served as the Charles Gwathmey Professor of Practice at the Yale School of Architecture since 2005. In addition to his work at Yale, Eisenman has also taught at Cambridge University, Harvard University, Princeton University, Ohio State University, and the Cooper Union. He has been a visiting professor and critic at nearly a dozen other schools and has lectured at many more.
"There are probably very few schools of architecture where Peter is yet to have lectured," wrote architect Marlon Blackwell, FAIA, in a letter of recommendation.
In 1967, Eisenman founded the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies, an international think tank for architecture based in New York, and established his private practice.
Eisenman has received numerous awards over the course of his half-century-long career, including the Medal of Honor from AIA New York (2001), Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award in Architecture from the Smithsonian Institute (2001), the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the Venice Architecture Biennale (2004), and the Wolf Foundation Prize in the Arts (2010). He was also named one of Popular Science's top five innovators for the University of Phoenix Stadium for the Arizona Cardinals (2006).
One of Eisenman's most well-known works is the City of Culture in the city of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, which has been an ongoing project since 1999.
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Eisenman joins the ranks of past recipients such as 2014 winner Harrison Fraker, Assoc. AIA, the founder of the Center for Environmental Studies. Fraker served as a dean at the University of Minnesota School of Architecture and the University of California, Berkeley's College of Environmental Design.
This year's jury for the Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education included Wendy Ornelas, FAIA, professor of architecture at Kansas State University's College of Architecture, Planning, & Design (chair); Michael Hoffman, AIA, director of the graduate program of Norwich University's School of Architecture+Art; Charlie Klecha, national president (and representative) of the AIAS, from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; Sylvia Lavin, head of the Ph.D. program at the University of California, Los Angeles's Department of Architecture and Urban Design; and Michael A. Speaks, dean of the School of Architecture at Syracuse University.
Follow ARCHITECT's coverage of the AIA Honor Awards.