Steven Holl Biography Print
Monday, 19 January 2009 02:08

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Steven Holl was born in 1947 in Bremerton, Washington.  He graduated from the University of Washington and pursued architecture studies in Rome in 1970.  In 1976 he joined the Architectural Association in London and established STEVEN HOLL ARCHITECTS in New York City.

Considered one of America’s most important architects, Steven Holl is recognised for his ability to blend space and light with great contextual sensitivity and to utilize the unique qualities of each project to create a concept-driven design.  He specializes in seamlessly integrating new projects into contexts with particular cultural and historic importance.

Photograph courtesy of Mark Heithoff

Steven Holl has realized cultural, civic, academic and residential projects both in the United States and internationally.  The Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki, Finland (1998) is generally considered to be his masterpiece.  Other notable work includes The Sarphatistraat Offices, Amsterdam (2000) and Chapel of St. Ignatius, Seattle, Washington (1997).  Some of his firm’s current work includes the Higgins Hall Center Section at the Pratt Institue School of Architecture, Brooklyn, New York; the Loisium Hotel and Spa, Langenlois, Austria; School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa; Swiss Embassy Residence, Washington, D.C.; and the expansion and renovation of the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri.  Recently Steven Holl Architects won two international design competitions and was selected to design the Cite du Surf et de l’Ocean, in Biarritz, France; and Sail Hybrid, a seaside resort project in the town of Knokke-Heist, Belgium.

Steven Holl has been recognized with architecture’s most prestigious awards and prizes.  In 2003 he was named Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects (FRIBA).  In 2002 the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, part of the Smithsonian Institute, awarded him their prestigious National Design Award in Architecture.  In 2001 France bestowed the Grande Médaille d’Or upon him, for Best Architect of the Academy of Architecture; and in the same year Time Magazine declared him “America’s Best Architect” for his ‘buildings that satisfy the spirit as well as the eye’.  In 1998 he was awarded the Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design and in the same year was the recipient of the prestigious Alvar Aalto Medal.  The New York American Institute of Architects awarded him with their Medal of Honor in 1997. In 1990 the American Academy of Arts and Letters selected Steven Holl to receive the Arnold W. Brunner Prize for Achievement in Architecture as an Art.

Steven Holl is a tenured Professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture and Planning.  He has lectured and exhibited widely and has published numerous texts including Anchoring (1989) and Parallax (2000).

He is a member of the American National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB), the American Institute of Architects, the American Association of Museums, the Honorary Whitney Circle, the Whitney Museum of American Art; and the International Honorary Committee, Vilpuri Library, of the Alvar Aalto Foundation.



Selected Honors:

2007 AIA/COTE Top Ten Green Project / Whitney Water Purification Facility and Park
2007 AIA NY Architecture Honor Award / Higgins Hall Center Section at the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn
2007 AIA NY Architecture Honor Award / New Residence at the Swiss Embassy, Washington, D.C.
2007 AIA NY Architecture Merit Award / School of Art & Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City
2007 AIA Institute Honor Award, School of Art & Art History, Iowa City
2006 Honorary Doctorate, Seattle University, Seattle
2006 Maholy-Nagy University of Art and Design, Budapest, Hungary
2006 AIA Iowa Honor Award of Excellence / School of Art & Art History, Iowa City
2006 Roger H. Corbetta Merit Award, Concrete Industry Board / Central Section Higgins Hall
2006 New York Chapter American Institute of Architects Merit Award / Planar House
2006 New York Chapter American Institute of Architects Citation / Sail Hybrid, Knokke Heist, Belgium
2005 New York Chapter American Institute of Architects Honor Award / Lake Whitney Water Purification Plant
2005 Benjamin Moore Hue Award
2004 International Parking Institute, Award of Excellence for best design of a parking facility, Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, MO
2003 NY AIA Project Award for Loisium Visitors' Center, Langenlois, Austria
2003 Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects
2003 AIA National Honor Award / Simmons Hall, MIT Undergraduate Residence
2002 Cooper Hewitt National Design Award for Architecture
2002 New York AIA Design Award / Simmons Hall, MIT Undergraduate Residence
College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of Minnesota
2001 L’Academie D’Architecture’s Grande Medaille d’Or (Paris)
2001 Seattle AIA Design Award / Bellevue Art Museum, Bellevue, WA
2000 Progressive Architecture Awards / Nelson Atkins Museum of Art; MIT Undergraduate Residence 2001
1999 New York AIA Design Award / Cranbrook Institute of Science, Bloomfield Hills, MI
1999 New York AIA Project Award / Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, MO
1999 National AIA Design Award / Kiasma, The Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki
1998 Chrysler Award for Innovation in Design
1998 Alvar Aalto Medal
1998 National AIA Design Award / Chapel of St. Ignatius, Seattle University
1997 Japanese Building Contractors Society Award / Makuhari Housing, Chiba, Japan
1997 National AIA Religious Architecture Award / Chapel of St. Ignatius, Seattle University
1997 New York AIA Medal of Honor Award
1996 Progressive Architecture Awards / Knut Hamsun, Bødo, Norway; Museum of the City, Cassino, Italy
1995 NYC AIA Design Awards / Cranbrook Institute of Science, MI; Chapel of St. Ignatius
1993 NYC AIA Architecture Project Award / Makuhari Housing, Makuhari, Japan
1993 AIA National Honor Award / Texas Stretto House, Dallas, Texas
1992 AIA National Honor Award / D.E. Shaw & Co. Offices, New York, NY
1991 NYC Art Commission Excellence in Design Award The Renovation of the Strand Theater, Brooklyn, NY
1991 AIA National Honor Award / Hybrid Building, Seaside, FLA


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Last Updated on Thursday, 26 May 2011 10:35