Golden Lion of the Venice Biennale 2014


Phyllis Lambert

The 14th International Architecture Exhibition, directed by Rem Koolhaas and centered on the Elements of Architecture, has given the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement to Phyllis Lambert. As Koolhaas said: “Not as an architect, but as a client and custodian, Phyllis Lambert has made a huge contribution to architecture. Without her participation, one of the few realizations in the 20th century of perfection on earth – the Seagram Building in New York – would not have happened (...) Architects make architecture; Phyllis Lambert made architects.” Phyllis Lambert (née Bronfman) was born in Toronto in 1927, and moved to New York in 1954, where she studied architecture and graduated in 1963. Soon she got involved in Seagram, the family business, and commissioned the famous New York headquarters to Mies van der Rohe. Years later she founded the Canadian Center for Architecture (CCA), perhaps the largest institution devoted to the study and preservation of modern architecture. Other awardees were the South Korea Pavilion, which earned the Gold Lion to best national participation; and the Chile Pavilion, which won the Silver Lion.

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