RIBA Gold Medal 2018


Neave Brown

The Gold Medal of the RIBA (The Royal Institute of British Architects) is the maximum distinction that can be awarded in the United Kingdom to a professional in the field, and in the latest edition it went to the American architect and artist Neave Brown. Born in the State of New York, Brown - who set aside architecture at 73 to study Fine Arts - began his career in the 1960s, though his most important works were developed in the following decade, when he was commissioned with ambitious urban planning projects for intermediate density, low-rise developments. These were conceived as a modern and radical reinterpretation of the row houses that were starting to spread in Great Britain in the Victorian era, and that today characterize most of the country’s urban territory. Brown’s unique contribution was that of turning this model, so criticized in modern times, into a richer urban type by resorting to mixed uses. All this with a markedly brutalist language that is reflected well in some of his most significant works, such as Dunboyne Road Estate (1977) and Alexandra Road Estate (1978), both in Camden (London).

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