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2015 Winners + Finalists

Top players in the international architectural and design community, from Canada, the U.S., Denmark and beyond, gathered at Toronto’s Evergreen Brick Works on June 19 as AZURE announced the winners of its fifth annual AZ Awards.

From affordable housing in France that borders on minimalist luxury, to Kickstarter-funded tiles made from old television sets and computer monitors, the 19 winners of the AZ Awards demonstrate an expansive spirit of innovation. At the gala, many of the winners took to the stage – some coming from as far away as Denmark and Dubai – to receive their trophies, which were designed by last year’s guest of honour, Karim Rashid. All 66 of the finalists, which were also up for People’s Choice awards, were applauded by a standing-room-only audience.

Taken together, all of the submissions represent a global snapshot of the world of architecture and design. Our international jury was also made up of some of the very best in their fields: architect Winka Dubbeldam of Archi-Tectonics (New York, US), architect Brendan MacFarlane of Jakob + MacFarlane (Paris, France), designer Anwar Mekhayech of the Design Agency (Toronto, Canada), landscape architect Janet Rosenberg of Janet Rosenberg & Studio (Toronto, Canada) and designer Philippe Malouin (London, UK).   Read more…


2015 Winners

Residential Architecture – Single Family: Haffenden House

Non-conformist is one way to describe Haffenden House in Syracuse, New York – a beautiful misfit in a neighbourhood defined by traditional clapboard and shingled houses. Designed by PARA Project, it is a playful and gutsy solution to a relatively conservative brief: to design a self-contained writing studio and library extension for two poets.
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Residential Architecture – Multi-Unit: Oiseau des Îles Social Housing

Nantes, located on the Loire River, takes quality of life very seriously: the affable city enjoys one of the highest standards of living in France. So why not extend that ethos to its social housing? Laetitia Antonini and Tom Darmon of the firm Antonini Darmon, lent this positive mindset to the Oiseau des Îles residences…
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Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: Melbourne School of Design

The Melbourne School of Design is a riot of architectural gestures, aesthetic quirks and unusual material applications, all rolled into one powerful structure, realized by John Wardle Architects with NADAAA of Boston.
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Architecture < 1,000 Square Metres: Pani Community Centre

Sustainability is not simply a factor in how a project is built; it also determines how a building serves the community and perpetuates its own ideals. Dutch architects Gerrit Schilder and Hill Scholte ensured that their design for a community centre in northern Bangladesh would meet these criteria when they decided on the self-imposed restriction of sourcing all materials and skilled trades for the project from a radius of 25 kilometres or less.
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Landscape Architecture: June Callwood Park

“I believe in kindness,” remarked the late June Callwood during her last televised interview, in 2007. Soon after, those words became the sonic blueprint for a park in Toronto’s central waterfront district, dedicated to her legacy as one of Canada’s leading journalists and social activists.
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Temporary Architecture: Epiphyte Chamber

Hylozoism, the belief that all things are imbued with life, goes back to pre-Socratic philosophers, who proposed metaphysical theories about the inherently animate nature of air, water and magnets, among other things. Skip forward a couple of millennia, and the material world has been revivified, only this time through technology.
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Residential Interiors: Casa G

At the heart of this modestly sized two- storey residence in northern Sicily, a staircase appears to float on a breath of air, similar to the ones that regularly pass through seaside cities like Cefalù. Framed by an artful grid of scaffolding made of 14‑millimetre-thick blackened iron rods with oak treads, the stairway winds its way up to a rooftop terrace overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea.
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Commercial/Institutional Interiors: Galleria Luxury Hall West

For a retail brand, a phenomenal interior can be a game changer. That is certainly the case at Galleria Luxury Hall West in Seoul, where a bold facelift by Burdifilek proved to be the secret weapon that crushed the competition. In most South Korean malls, the shop-in-shop experience, where each brand occupies its own sovereign turf, still prevails.
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Furniture Design: Kinesit

Now that the cubicle wall has fallen, replaced by more loosely defined work environments where cafés double as boardrooms, contract furniture has undergone a seismic shift as well. Kinesit by Arper, launched last year at Orgatec in Cologne, Germany, responds to the new office terrain by turning the task chair into what looks like an ordinary seat.
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Furniture Systems: Grip Tablesystem

Like a master yogi, Grip uses its centre of gravity to sink into a grounded, statuesque pose. The movement reveals a new kind of built-in flexibility for the table, which strengthens and stabilizes as more weight is put on it. Designed by architect Troels Grum-Schwensen of Copenhagen for Randers + Radius, the three components assemble almost effortlessly into a free-standing piece.
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Interior Products: CRT Tile

Crowd sourcing has launched some ingenious products over the years. One example is CRT Glass tiles, made from old television sets and computer monitors, when cathode ray tube technology reigned. With advances in liquid crystal displays over the past decade, CRTs have drifted into oblivion – except that the harmful waste they leave behind is difficult to dispose of. For the most part, the material is exported, dumped into landfills, or stored in warehouses, where it sits waiting for recycling methods to develop.
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Lighting Fixtures: Wireflow

By reversing the usual roles assigned to diffusers and other components, where the wiring is primary and explicitly decorative, Wireflow has cracked open a new topology, part drawing, part sculpture and part lamp. This groundbreaking series of pendants and chandeliers, each handcrafted in Barcelona by lamp maker Vibia, raises several visual tensions between presence and absence, transparency and luminosity.
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Lighting Installations: Art Museum Ahrenshoop

The five conjoined buildings that together make up the Art Museum Ahrenshoop are a contemporary translation of the thatch-roofed houses found in the tiny northern German town. Designed by Staab Architekten of Berlin, the steeply pitched rooftops and exterior walls are also dramatically clad in irregularly bevelled bronze panels, which from a distance bear a striking resemblance to hatching.
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Unbuilt Competition Entries: Liepaja Thermal Bath

Inspired by the domes that cap the majestic Roman baths, this masterful vision for a thermal spa bridges past and future – an aim that goes hand in hand with the project’s site. Liepāja, perched between the Baltic Sea and a lake in western Latvia, is known as “the city where the wind is born.”
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Concepts/Prototypes: Robotic Infiltrations

A tidy square box is relatively easy to execute, architecturally speaking; it’s the seemingly random that tests one’s mettle. While software is making the design side easier, fabrication of different components with unusual angles continues to pose difficulties. Architecture Challenge, an annual workshop conducted by the University of Applied Arts Vienna, brought together students and experts…
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Student A+ Award: M&N

A recent graduate of the master’s of architecture program at SCI-Arc, Danny Jens Karas has a vision for how the buildings of the future could look, and how they might be built. It’s the stuff of science fiction. He is a masterful artist, rendering prototypes with his team that are fully interpreted 3‑D models, and videos that show Mad Max-ian structural components assembled and disassembled in mid-air.
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Social Good Award: Toigetation

We may take plumbing for granted, but 15 percent of the global population still lives without toilets. In Vietnam, up to 88 percent of rural schools have no sewage facilities. That’s what makes Toigetation such a life-changing accomplishment. Sited on a hillside in northern Vietnam, the washroom – which contains showers, toilets, urinals and washbasins – was constructed to serve 485 children from the nearby Son Lap School in Cao Bang province.
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Social Good Award: Fogo Island Inn

With its brilliant white cladding and stilt-like legs, the Fogo Island Inn has an air of confidence, rising as it does at the windswept edge of the Atlantic Ocean. It represents the sort of confidence the small island hasn’t known for a long time, not since the collapse of the cod fishery decades ago.
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Environmental Leadership Award: Memory of the Arctic

In an age when melting ice caps have become inevitable, it is both tragic and necessary that efforts are underway, at least in theory, to preserve climatic records of the past hundreds of millennia. Sofia Ceylan, Katharina Laekamp and Leonie Otten, architecture students at the Technical University of Berlin, decided to site their concept for preserving ice cores in the North.
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2015 Finalists

Residential Architecture – Single Family: Flynn Mews House

Location: Dublin, Ireland
Firm: Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects

Residential Architecture – Single Family: Tower House

Location: Upstate New York, USA
Firm: GLUCK+

Residential Architecture – Multi-Unit: Formosa1140

Location: West Hollywood, USA
Firm: Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects

Residential Architecture – Multi-Unit: River City Phase 1

Location: Toronto, Canada
Firm: Saucier + Perrotte Architectes and ZAS Architects

Residential Architecture – Multi-Unit: Vertical Itaim

Location: São Paulo, Brazil
Firm: Studio MK27

Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: Moesgaard Museum

Location: Højbjerg, Denmark
Firm: Henning Larsen Architects

Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: China Wood Sculpture Museum

Location: Harbin, China
Firm: MAD Architects

Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: Aga Khan Museum

Location: Toronto, Canada Firm: Maki & Associates and Moriyama & Teshima Architects

Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: Hotel by the Waterfalls

Location: Ramboda, Sri Lanka
Firm: Palinda Kannangara

Architecture > 1,000 Square Metres: Fogo Island Inn

Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Firm: Saunders Architecture

Architecture < 1,000 Square Metres: Lune de Sang Sheds

Location: Northern New South Wales, Australia
Firm: Chrofi

Architecture < 1,000 Square Metres: Museum for Architectural Drawing

Location: Berlin, Germany
Firm: SPEECH Tchoban & Kuznetsov

Landscape Architecture: Mulini Beach

Location: Rovinj, Croatia
Firm: 3LHD

Landscape Architecture: Four Seasons Hotel and Residences

Location: Toronto, Canada
Firm: Claude Cormier + Associés

Landscape Architecture: Poppy Plaza

Location: Calgary, Canada
Firm: The Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative

Landscape Architecture: Metamorphous

Location: Vancouver, Canada
Firm: Paul Sangha Landscape Architecture

Temporary/Demonstration Architecture: Hedge

Location: Montreal, Canada
Firm: Architecturama

Landscape Architecture: La Cage aux Folles

Location: Los Angeles, USA
Firm: Warren Techentin Architecture

Residential Interiors: Sardinia House

Location: Cagliari, Italy
Firm: Architetto Pierluigi Piu

Residential Interiors: Le 205

Location: Montreal, Canada
Firm: Atelier Moderno

Residential Interiors: Culture 01

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Firm: i29 Interior Architects

Commercial/Institutional Interiors: T2 Headquarters

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Firm: Landini Associates

Commercial/Institutional Interiors: Cornell University Sibley Hall

Location: Ithaca, USA
Firm: Levenbetts

Commercial/ Institutional Interiors: Steelcase WorkLife

Location: Toronto, Canada
Firm: Superkül

Furniture Design: Zinta

Designer: Lievore Altherr Molina
Manufacturer: Arper

Furniture Design: Free Hug

Designer: Eun Kyoung Lee

Furniture Design: Aesync

Designer: EOOS
Manufacturer: Keilhauer

Furniture Systems: BuzziPicNic

Designer: Alain Gilles
Manufacturer: BuzziSpace

Lighting Fixtures: Traveller

Designer: Ana Tevšić
Manufacturer: Love, Ana

Lighting Fixtures: Slab Series

Designer: Lukas Peet
Manufacturer: Andlight

Lighting Fixtures: OK Lamp

Designer: Konstantin Grcic
Manufacturer: Flos

Lighting Installations: LWL Museum for Art and Culture

Firm: Licht Kunst Licht

Interior Products: Human Nature

Designer: David Oakey
Manufacturer: Interface

Interior Products: Oli the Olive Bowl

Designer: Miguel Pinto Félix
Manufacturer: MPFXDesign

Interior Products: Figure No. 1 and 2

Designer: David Hamlin
Manufacturer: Submaterial

Concepts/Prototypes: Chicago Loop BRT Station

Firm: AECOM

Concepts/Prototypes: 11 Sheets of Plywood

Firm: RUFproject

Concepts/Prototypes: The Bit Light

Firm: Choi + Shine Architects

Student A+ Award: Institution of Un-Natural Fictions

Designer: Anthony Ko, Architectural Association School of Architecture, London, UK

Student A+ Award: Salt Siida Nomadic Hostel

Designer: Benny Kwok, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada

Student A+ Award: Memory of the Arctic

Designers: Sofia Ceylan, Katharina Laekamp and Leonie Otten, Technische Universität Berlin, Germany

Student A+ Award: The Archaeological Machine

Designer: Marta López Rubio, Superior Technical School of Architecture of Madrid, Spain

Student A+ Award: Sharon Fieldhouse

Designers: Students of Virginia Tech design/buildLAB, Blacksburg, USA

Social Good Award: Rasesa Music and Dance Space

Location: Mochudi, Botswana
Firm:
 Richard Kroeker Design

Social Good Award: Medical Training Center Campus

Location: Mae Sot, Thailand
Firm:
 A.gor.a Architects

Environmental Leadership Award: CRT Glass Tile

Manufacturer: Fireclay Tile

Environmental Leadership Award: University of Calgary Energy Environment Experiential Learning

Firms: DIALOG and Perkins+Will

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