Throughout his distinguished career of more than forty years, Richard Rogers, The Lord Rogers of Riverside, has consistently pursued the highest goals for architecture.
Key Rogers projects already represent defining moments in the history of contemporary architecture. The Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris (1971-1977), designed in partnership with Renzo Piano, revolutionized museums, transforming what had once been elite monuments into popular places of social and cultural exchange, woven into the heart of the city. Lloyd’s of London in the City of London (1978-1986), another landmark of late twentieth century design, established Richard Rogers’ reputation as a master not only of the large urban building, but also of his own brand of architectural expressionism. As these buildings and other subsequent projects, such as the recently completed and acclaimed Terminal 4, Barajas Airport in Madrid (1997-2005) demonstrate, a unique interpretation of the Modern Movement’s fascination with the building as machine, an interest in architectural clarity and transparency, the integration of public and private spaces, and a commitment to flexible floor plans that respond to the ever-changing demands of users, are recurring themes in his work. Rogers’ buildings span numerous types, scales, and continents. All of his projects, however, are united by a formal rigor as well as a commitment to the user. Over the years, he has collaborated with a range of associates on projects large and small, though his steady hand remains evident in each.
Rogers combines his love of architecture with a profound knowledge of building materials and techniques. His fascination with technology is not merely for artistic effect, but more importantly, it is a clear echo of a building’s program and a means to make architecture more productive for those it serves. His championing of energy efficiency and sustainability has had a lasting effect on the profession.
Born in Florence, Italy, and trained as an architect in London, at the Architectural Association and, later, in the United States at Yale University, Rogers has an outlook as urbane and expansive as his upbringing. In his writings, through his role as advisor to policy-making groups, as well as his large-scale planning work, Rogers is a champion of urban life and believes in the potential of the city to be a catalyst for social change.
We know that architecture is a discipline of enormous political and social consequence. And today we celebrate Richard Rogers, a humanist, who reminds us that architecture is the most social of arts. Throughout his long, innovative career, Rogers shows us that perhaps the architect’s most lasting role is that of a good citizen of the world. For all of these outstanding qualities, the Jury awards Richard Rogers the 2007 Pritzker Architecture Prize.