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                                 Dame Zaha Hadid
The Royal Institute of British Architects have announced that the globally-renowned architect Dame Zaha Hadid will receive the 2016 Royal Gold Medal, the first woman to be awarded the prestigious
honour in her own right.
Zaha Hadid is internationally known for her built, theoretical and academic work. Each of her dynamic and innovative projects builds on over thirty years of revolutionary experimentation and research in the fields of architecture, design and urbanism.
Given in recognition of a lifetime’s work, the Royal Gold Medal is approved personally by Her Majesty The Queen and is given to a person or group of people who have had a significant influence “either directly or indirectly on the advancement of architecture”. Awarded since 1848, past Royal Gold Medallists include Frank Gehry (2000), Norman Foster (1983), Frank Lloyd Wright (1941) and Sir George Gilbert Scott (1859).
Speaking of the announcement, Zaha Hadid said:
“I am very proud to be awarded the Royal Gold Medal, in particular, to be the first woman to receive the honour in her own right. I would like to thank Peter Cook, Louisa Hutton and David Chipperfield for the nomination and Jane Duncan and the Honours Committee for their support. We now see more established female architects all the time. That doesn’t mean it’s easy. Sometimes the challenges are immense. There has been tremendous change over recent years and we will continue this progress. This recognition is an honour for me and my practice, but equally, for all our clients. It is always exciting to collaborate with those who have great civic pride and vision. Part of architecture’s job is to make people feel good in the spaces where we live, go to school or where we work - so we must be committed to raising standards. Housing, schools and other vital public buildings have always been based on the concept of minimal existence – that shouldn’t be the case today. Architects now have the skills and tools to address these critical issues.”
RIBA Honorary Fellowships are awarded annually to people who have made a particular contribution to architecture in its broadest sense. This includes its promotion, administration and outreach; and its role in building more sustainable communities and in the education of future generations.
RIBA International Fellowships reward the particular contributions that non-UK architects have made to architecture.


KEES CHRISTIAANSE, Netherlands – nominated by 


Louisa Hutton

Kees Christiaanse is a Dutch architect and urban planner whose work personifies the complementary nature of these disciplines: his architecture is rooted in the city and his urban planning is very much design-based. In his role as artistic director of the Dutch Building Department - a post he held in the mid 90s - Christiaanse combined the two disciplines harmoniously, fostering the Dutch urban renaissance of the late 20th century.


Featuring Dame Zaha Hadid, Sir Peter Cook, Bjarke Ingels, Grayson Perry and Kevin McCloud, the 2016 RIBA’s Royal Gold Medal week, sponsored by Italian furniture manufacturer Arper, promises to be more exciting than ever.
To recognise the extraordinary talent rewarded with the 2016 Royal Gold Medal and RIBA fellowships, a special programme of events, lectures and masterclasses are taking place between Monday 1 and Wednesday 3 February. For more information about the masterclasses and lectures and to book, go to the individual pages below.
Dame Zaha Hadid will receive the Royal Gold Medal at the award dinner ceremony on Wednesday 3 February when she will be interviewed by BBC presenter, Razia Iqbal.

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