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Dogma receives 2023 RIBA Charles Jencks Award

The Jencks Foundation at The Cosmic House and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) are pleased to announce Dogma, a Brussels-based practice focused on the relationship between architecture and the city, as the 2023 recipient of the Charles Jencks Award.

30 November 2023

The Jencks Foundation at The Cosmic House and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) are pleased to announce Dogma, a Brussels-based practice focused on the relationship between architecture and the city, as the 2023 recipient of the Charles Jencks Award.  

Given annually, the award recognises an individual or practice who has made a major contribution to both the theory and practice of architecture.  

Founded in 2002 by Pier Vittorio Aureli and Martino Tattara, Dogma’s work on large-scale urban design projects and exploration of the relationship between theory and practice continues to have a major influence on the profession, particularly among students, through both their thought processes and representation of architecture. In addition to design projects, members of Dogma engage passionately with teaching, writing and research, with Pier Vittorio Aureli and Martino Tattara teaching at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and the Faculty of Architecture, KU Leuven respectively.  

Dogma Founders Pier Vittorio Aureli (left) and Martino Tattara (right) © Marc Baert

Dogma’s ‘research by design’ approach to exploring domestic space and its potential for transformation has resulted in studies and projects that have been exhibited internationally at the Tallinn Architectural Biennale (2014), the HKW Berlin (2015), the Biennale di Venezia (2016), the Chicago Architectural Biennial (2017), and the London Design Museum (2018).  

On receiving the Award, Martino Tattara and Pier Vittorio Aureli, founders of Dogma said:  

“We are truly delighted and honoured to receive this award. We are especially honoured because it is dedicated to Charles Jencks, whose practice combined history, theory and design, which are also inseparable aspects of our work. Over the last ten years, we have tried to put forward ideas to improve the way in which we live and work in our houses and in our cities, and have done this both through design proposals and by revisiting some of the most salient and often forgotten chapters of the history of our discipline. We would like to share the award with past and present collaborators without whom our work would have not been possible.” 

Lily Jencks, founder of the Jencks Foundation and jury member said:  

“Few architects have had a greater influence on students’ thinking and representation over the last 10 years than Dogma. Through teaching, exhibitions, competitions and books, they follow a clear and uncompromising project to dismantle the relationships of architecture and capital.  

While Dogma have not built many projects, all of their work takes the material construction of buildings seriously, and has implications on the building profession. They are an important counter to the commercialised architectural profession, using their deep knowledge of architectural history and theory, to propose alternative ways for us to live together.” 

Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times architecture and design critic and jury member said:  

“Pier Vittorio Aureli has been a hugely influential figure in education, theory and design. Politics, economics, and urban architecture combine to give a rich image of architecture as an historical continuity.  

He reinforces his ideas with a drawn language which is as rigorous and instantly recognisable as his theory. His practice, Dogma, have been similarly influential, managing to embrace exhibitions, built work and books, seductive in their deceptive simplicity.” 

Talking about the RIBA Charles Jencks Award, Dr Jenny Russell, Director of Education and Learning at RIBA and Chair of the selection panel said:  

“This year’s panel sought a recipient who reflected the breadth and influence of architecture practices – a practice that worked within the built environment, but whose material output was not only building. In celebrating these multiple intelligences and modes of practice, the Award aims to acknowledge the breadth of approaches which define the culture of contemporary architecture.” 

The 2023 RIBA Charles Jencks Award selection panel consisted of RIBA President, Muyiwa Oki; Jencks Foundation Founder, Lily Jencks; Dr Adrian Lahoud, Dean of the School of Architecture at the Royal College of Art; Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times Architecture and Design Critic; Thomas Aquilina, Architect and Co-Director of New Architecture Writers; Dr Samaneh Moafi, Assistant Director of Research at Forensic Architecture and last year’s Award winner. The panel was chaired by Dr Jenny Russell, Director of Education and Learning at RIBA. The shortlist for the 2023 Jencks Award was DAAR architects, Mathur / Da Cunha, and Dogma. 

Dogma will host a lecture at RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London on Thursday 16 May 2024. Tickets will be released and can be booked through the RIBA website starting from January 2024. 

Notes to editors:   

  1. Media contact:   
  2. Images can be downloaded here. 
  3. Dogma was founded in 2002 by Pier Vittorio Aureli and Martino Tattara. From the beginning of its activities, Dogma has worked on the relationship between architecture and the city by focusing mostly on urban design and large-scale projects. Dogma is active in offering consultancies to municipalities and agencies concerned with urban planning and architectural issues. Parallel to the design projects, the members of Dogma have intensely engaged with teaching, writing, and research, activities that have been an integral part of the office’s engagement with architecture. In 2006, Dogma has won the 1st Iakov Chernikhov Prize for the best emerging architectural practice. 
  4. The RIBA Charles Jencks Award was established by architectural historian Charles Jencks 1993. Since 2021, the Jencks Foundation at The Cosmic Hosue has been coordinating the award with RIBA. The principle behind the award is to acknowledge the multiple intelligences at work in architecture, and celebrate the other forms of thinking and production can drive architecture beyond design. Previous recipients include Zaha Hadid, Níall McLaughlin, Herzog & de Meuron and OMA / AMO Rem Koolhaas. In addition to a £3,000 prize, the winner delivers a lecture at the RIBA. 
  5. The Jencks Foundation at The Cosmic House is a laboratory of Post-Modern culture that frames architecture in its most universal context, to understand how the man-made is an expression of our cosmic existence. The foundation opened The Cosmic House to the public for the first time in September 2021, and continues with a program of exhibitions, commissions, residencies, salons and seminars organised around an annual theme. The Cosmic House -a landmark of Post-Modern architecture - was designed by the architectural historian, critic and designer Charles Jencks and the artist, garden designer and scholar Maggie Keswick complete in 1983. The house contains Charles’ archive from his work as a historian, critic, land artist and co-founder of Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres. The foundation preserves and opens these resources to the public to encourage the study of the architecture and culture of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. 
  6. The New Architecture Writers is a free programme for emerging design writers, develop­ing the journalistic skill, editorial connections and critical voice of its participants. N.A.W. focuses on black and minority ethnic emerging writers who are under-repre­sented across design journalism and curation. A series of evening workshops, talks, and writing briefs form the core of N.A.W.’s programme with one-to-one mentoring from experienced design critics and editors throughout.   
  7. The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a global professional membership body that serves its members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. Follow @RIBA on Twitter for regular updates. 

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