The Fleur Groenendijk Foundation together with the Academy of Architecture in Rotterdam (RAvB) have introduced a new annual encouragement award called De Meester.

The prize which will only be granted to graduates of the Academy and supports and advances the career and work of a young architect or urban designer. Considering that architecture and urban planning are disciplines that, besides their academic relevance, have foremost an impact on society, the procedure for awarding the prize is of a new format.

Four nominees will be asked to present their projects – live before an audience and jury – during a full evening programme open to the general public. The jury will pose questions and provide comments on the spot and the winner of De Meester 2015 will be announced that very same night. Apart from professional peers from the same discipline, the jury will include two lay jurors from the fields of science, culture or communications.

The Academy, which is celebrating its 50-year anniversary this year, was founded on the principle that in training as an architect or urban designer there can be no division between the role of designer and creative ‘builder’ and that of an analytical and critical ‘thinker’. Today the Academy still teaches on the basis of this vision and educates students in craftsmanship that is anchored in social relevance.

Director Chris van Langen announced the new prize open to students in his speech last Friday at the opening ceremony of the anniversary festivities. The announcement of the nominees, the jury and the date of the De Meester Prize evening will follow shortly.

The RAvB is an academy specialized in educating students already active in the professional design arena through part-time study in order to gain degrees in architecture or urban design.

The Dutch Masterkeuzegids 2015 (a guide to Master’s degrees) recently praised the Academy in Rotterdam as the best Master’s programme of the six architecture degrees available in the Netherlands.

 

Dikkie Scipio
29-08-2015