Sponsored by The Hyatt Foundation

Ceremony Speech

J. Carter Brown
Chairman of the Jury

On behalf of the Pritzker Jury and my fellow jurors, I wanted to add my accolade to our prize winner and our thanks to Harold Williams and all of my friends here at The Getty, including my former colleague, John Walsh, for the fabulous opportunity to be in this site when it is all still crackling and happening.

This is what architecture is all about. It's about building, and here we're part of the process, not simply handed the product. And Richard, our hat is off to you. I think there is not one of us that hasn't felt the tingle of being on this site and in this setting.

Announcements have come thick and fast in the last 24 hours, and we all know that Harold as announced that some time, way off into the future, he will no longer be in charge of this institution. That is very hard to envision. I think that we all recognize that part of the architectural process also includes the patron. And Harold has been a fantastic patron. What you see here is also largely due to him. So thanks for having us here, Harold.

I am also here to remind you that the Pritzker Prize is very much by intention an international one. And tonight, I think this is reinforced. It's interesting to see that a Richard Meier, an architect from the United States, is asked to do buildings in Spain—a fabulous museum in Barcelona—or in Frankfurt, or in Rome. Now, Rafael Moneo, from Spain, is being invited more and more to design buildings in this country. In fact, we have patrons of his here from Houston, where he is doing an addition to their Museum of Art, and an about-to-be patron, Your Eminence [nodding to Cardinal Mahony, who has commissioned a new cathedral for Los Angeles. I think that is very exciting to recognize how this global village we now live in has become so international.

Moneo, as some of you may know, studied in Rome for a couple of years and has done work in Spain which dramatizes the extent to which Roman culture populated the Iberian Peninsula; and one is reminded constantly of the wonderful reverberations back through time that architecture can give us. We have it here. What from the model I thought originally would be rather Greek, as a hill town, I think once we're here, and feel its grandeur, we recognize is rather Roman.

We have a Moneo understanding the past and that great Latin tradition, which is also part of the American tradition. I think his cathedral will bring us into a realization of that in this city, which was named after all Los Angeles, and is a city that very much represents the wonderful catholicity that our nation of the U.S.A. embodies.

It is appropriate that in a City of Angels we should be celebrating great patrons. And there are among us two of the greatest patrons of today, because it is to them we owe the Pritzker Prize. Cindy Pritzker is very much a part of this team. Cindy, why don't you stand? I think we should all thank her.

Some of you were at the ceremony at the National Building Museum a few weeks ago, when the prize this time went not to an architect, but to Mr. and Mrs. Pritzker. It was a very moving evening, and we had many Pritzker Laureates come and doff their caps. And so this podium is now rightfully turned over to the President of the Hyatt Foundation himself, a very international-minded man, Jay Pritzker, our angel.