Winners 2021

The Winnners

The Winner of the Hand-Drawn category is ‘Reconfiguring Addis Ababa’s Narratives’ by Antonio Paoletti

It depicts a graphic novel exploring a proposal for the redevelopment of Addis Ababa’s dilapidated historical districts, where the livelihoods of resident communities are threatened by the city’s rapid urbanization.

Reconfiguring Addis Ababa's Narratives

Sir John Soane’s Museum’s Exhibitions Curator and Architecture Drawing Prize judge Louise Stewart describes the work, “This impressive drawing uses an unusual format to place narrative and the impact of buildings on peoples’ lives at the heart of architectural drawing.  This approach highlights the vibrancy of architectural drawing today, and the way it facilitates creativity and experimentation. “

This year there are two joint Winners in the Hybrid category that highlight originality and flair in combining different drawing techniques.  The judges were equally impressed by ‘Fluid Strata’ by Filippa Dafni and ‘(Un)homeliness’ by Boji Hu.

Flood-responsive landscape performance

‘Fluid Strata’ is a drawing responding to the climate emergency in central London by proposing the activation of the “Deep Ground” as a responsive flood-defence landscape.

Ken Shuttleworth Founder of Make Architects and judge commented on Filippa Dafni’s drawing,“As a jury we were all impressed by Fluid Strata and the way it blurs the lines between physical objects and drawing with great skill and imagination, making it a truly exceptional example of a hybrid rendering.”

Boji Hu’s ‘(Un)homeliness’ includes a hand-drawn short film together with a set of images.  The two-part work explores the boundaries of private and public spheres by fulfilling the potential of the vacant urban interior to shield homeless people, refugee and asylum seekers. 



Fellow judge and architect Lily Jencks, Co-founder of Lily Jencks Studio/ Jencks Squared, says of the joint hybrid category winner, ‘(Un)homeliness’ is a powerful story told with a moody suggestive pencil gesture. It was exciting to see the stills animated with sound to convey a strong atmospheric urban scene, accompanied by beautiful renders to give a sense of a full potential of hybrid architectural drawings.’

The Digital category Winner is ‘Site(s) of Flux’ by Zachary Higson.

>Szczepaniak Astridge

‘Site(s) of Flux’ is a location-based project investigating the nature of place. It begins to question how a traditional architectural project should be carried out in terms of the relationships between studio (bedroom) and site.

Narinder Sagoo Senior Partner at Foster + Partners and one of the Prize judges explained why it was selected as the Winner in the digital category, “Our digital prize winner ‘Sites(s) of Flux’ creates a Soane-like montage of models, photos and paintings within a two-dimensional picture plane. A drawing within a drawing, and more. One could explore this piece time and time again, discovering another level of genius each time.”

‘Site(s) of Flux’ was also selected for The Lockdown Prize which was created during the pandemic and is awarded to one of the drawings shortlisted in the hand-drawn, hybrid and digital categories.

World Architecture Festival Director Paul Finch who chaired the judging panel notes,

‘This drawing was generated in the potentially claustrophobic context of home isolation during the pandemic. The depth of constructive engagement with the immediately available, and the work that resulted, make ‘Site(s) of Flux’ a worthy winner of this year’s Lockdown Prize.’

The winning and shortlisted drawings will be exhibited at Sir John Soane’s Museum in London (19/01-19/02/22) where the overall winner will be announced on January 25th.

The winning and shortlisted drawings also form a part of The Architecture Drawing Prize five-year retrospective curated by Sir John Soane’s Museum and hosted in a virtual gallery designed by Make Architects. 

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