Shigeru Ban

Architect / Japan / Shigeru Ban Architects

Shigeru Ban (b. 1957, Tokyo) attended the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) and graduated from The Cooper Union School of Architecture in 1984. In 1985, he established Shigeru Ban Architects, a private practice in Tokyo. In 1995, he began working as a consultant to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and in the same year established an NGO, Voluntary Architects’ Network (VAN).

Renowned for his innovative ideas in works such as the Curtain Wall House; Japan Pavilion, EXPO 2000 (Hannover, Germany); Nicolas G. Hayek Center (Tokyo); Nomadic Museum; and Centre Pompidou-Metz (France), today, Ban operates three offices, in Tokyo, New York, and Paris. He has contributed his knowledge, skills, and energy to disaster-relief projects, including the Paper Log House (Kobe, Japan, 1995; Turkey, 2000, India, 2002), Paper Church (Kobe, 1995), Tsunami Reconstruction Project (Kirinda, Sri Lanka, 2005), Temporary Elementary School (Chengdu, China 2008), L’Aquila Temporary Concert Hall (L’Aquila, Italy, in progress), and waterproof shelters currently underway in Haiti.

Ban has been awarded a number of prizes, including the Grande Médaille d’Or de l’Académie d’Architecture, France (2004), Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture (2005), Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal in Architecture (2005), l’Ordre National du Mérite, France (2009), and l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, France (2010). He served on the jury for the Pritzker Architecture Prize from 2007 to 2009; and as Professor at Keio University, Japan, from 2001 to 2008. He is a Visiting Professor at Harvard University Graduate School of Design and a Visiting Critic at Cornell University (2010).

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