The Justice is on the Jury, Oh Yeah and Zaha Too

International, Midwest
Friday, September 16, 2011

Justice Stephen Breyer and Zaha Hadid (courtesy Pritzker Prize)

File under: “Say What?” Retired  Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer has joined the jury for the Pritzker Prize. Prize organizers say the Justice has a long and demonstrable interest in architecture. Who knew? Also joining the jury is 2004 laureate Zaha Hadid. Is it just us, or does it seem strange for Zaha to be upstaged by a guy in a black robe known for his rigorous legal scholarship and even temperament? 

According to a release from the prize:

In addition to his distinguished career in the law, Justice Breyer has a long history of interest in art and architecture, having authored the foreword to a book titled, Celebrating The Courthouse: A Guide For Architects, Their Clients, And The Public in 2006.  Further, in 2009, the Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies honored him with the first Leonore and Walter H. Annenberg Award for Diplomacy through the Arts.

Okay then! As we previously reported in our examination of the Pritzker Prize, a holding a seat on the jury is both a demanding and cushy job. Other current jurors include:  Lord Palumbo of the United Kingdom; Alejandro Aravena from Chile, an architect and executive director of Elemental; Yung Ho Chang, an architect and educator from Beijing, China, currently a professor at MIT;  Australian architect Glenn Murcutt, the 2002 Pritzker Laureate;  Juhani Pallasmaa of Finland, an architect, professor and author; and Karen Stein, a writer, editor, and architectural consultant.

Architects Carlos Jimenez and Renzo Piano stepped down from the jury.


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