Zaha Hadid’s Maxxi Museum of Art in Rome

museumThe RIBA has announced the shortlist for this year’s Stirling prize, which is dominated by cultural buildings. Zaha Hadid’s Maxxi Museum of Art in Rome is the bookies’ favourite to win the £20,000 prize.
Rick Mather’s Ashmolean Museum extension in Oxford, and David Chipperfield Architects’ Neues Museum in Berlin have also made the shortlist for the prize which, in its 15th year, remains one of the most prestigious accolades in architecture. The remaining three places have been given to smaller or lower-profile projects: Bateman’s Row in London by Theis & Khan; DSDHA’s Christ’s College school in Guildford; and Clapham Manor primary school in London by dRMM. “This is the first year that two schools have been shortlisted for the prize,” said RIBA president and Stirling judge Ruth Reed. “They represent what all schools should be: light, well-laid-out and well-equipped environments in which all students can flourish. With the programme to improve our extremely poor school estate now much reduced, it could be some time before we see such exemplar school buildings on the Stirling shortlist again.” Projects that failed to make the list, despite being favourably tipped, include the Warsaw Embassy by Tony Fretton Architects, whose Fuglsang Art Mus-eum in Denmark was beaten to the Stirling last year by Rogers Stirk Harbour’s London Maggie’s Centre. As well as Reed, this year’s judges comprise Ivan Harbour of Rogers Stirk Harbour, Edward Jones of Dixon Jones, historian Lisa Jardine and broadcaster Mark Lawson. They will visit all six buildings before selecting the winner, which will be announced at an awards ceremony at London’s Roundhouse on October 2. The awards will be hosted by Kevin McCloud and be broadcast live by the BBC’s Culture Show in a new slot after moving from its previous home at Channel 4.

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