Francisco Javier Sáenz de Oíza
The most prestigious prize in the world of Hispanic culture was granted for the second time to an architect - the first time around was in 1989, to Brazil's Oscar Niemeyer - and for the first time to a Spaniard. The jury stressed the long fecund career of Francisco Javier Sáenz de Oíza (1918), his refusal to attach himself to any codes other than those of his own creativity, and his keeping intact all capacity for risk. It also acknowledged his years of teaching at Madrid's School of Architecture, his role as the driving force of a whole generation of dedicated architects. In the 1993 edition of the award, the Navarrese master - considered a central figure of modern architecture in Spain and author of such significant skyscrapers as Torres Blancas (1960-1968) and the Banco de Bilbao (1972-1978), both in Madrid - competed, among others, with the Valencian architect-engineer Santiago Calatrava.