2010 AIA Gold Medal Awarded to Peter Bohlin, FAIA

Profession’s highest honor goes to architect known for exceptional contextual use of materials.

The Board of Directors of The AIA voted today to award the 2010 AIA Gold Medal to Peter Bohlin, FAIA. Bohlin is the founder of Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, which has offices in Seattle, Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and San Francisco.

The AIA Gold Medal, voted on annually, is considered to be the profession’s highest national honor. The Gold Medal honors an individual whose significant body of work has had a lasting influence on the theory and practice of architecture. Bohlin will be honored at the 2010 AIA National Convention in Miami.

AIA President Marvin Malecha, FAIA, notified Bohlin by telephone immediately after the Board made its decision. “I’m so pleased and I’m surprised,” said Bohlin. “We all believe in architecture. It is our life to a great extent. Like athletes, we all know that it’s hard work to make it look easy, and we’re all constantly striving to do that.”

Over the course of his long career, Bohlin has designed rural houses and nature centers as well as excellent urban buildings. The key to success for both building types is their contextual use of materials. Locals can see an example of Bohlin’s work: the Seattle City Hall.

“He moves from the log cabin to the glass box with the same unassailable ethic,” wrote Mack Scogin, FAIA, of Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, in a recommendation letter.

Bohlin’s projects have earned 14 national AIA Awards, including nine Institute Honor Awards, COTE Top Ten Green Project Awards, AIA Committee on Education and AIA Housing Awards. Bohlin is the 66th AIA Gold Medalist. In recognition of his legacy to architecture, his name will be chiseled into the granite Wall of Honor in the lobby of the AIA headquarters in Washington, D.C.

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