Architect David Chipperfield wins 2013 Praemium Imperiale international arts prize

British architect David Chipperfield has won the 2013 Praemium Imperiale award for architecture, as was announced today by the Japan Art Association. The award, which brings with it 15 million yen (approximately $150,000) for each recipient, recognizes lifetime achievement in the arts in categories not covered by the Nobel Prize. The prizes will be presented at a ceremony in Tokyo on October 16.

The other Praemium Imperiale laureates for 2013, the prize’s 25th anniversary, are British sculptor Antony Gormley, Spanish-born international opera star Plácido Domingo, American filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola, and Italian painter Michelangelo Pistoletto.

The Japan Art Association also named the JuniOrchestra of Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, based in Rome, the recipient of its 2013 Grant for Young Artists. The group will receive an award of 5 million yen (approximately $50,000).

The Praemium Imperiale is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious prizes for painting, sculpture, architecture, music and theatre/film. Now in its 25th year, the award is a powerful international voice for the enduring value of the arts.

The 2013 laureates join a roster of 124 artists who include Ingmar Bergman, Leonard Bernstein, Peter Brook, Anthony Caro, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Norman Foster, Frank Gehry, Jean-Luc Godard, David Hockney, Willem de Kooning, Akira Kurosawa, Renzo Piano, Robert Rauschenberg, Mstislav Rostropovich and Ravi Shankar.

“In our twenty-fifth year, we reaffirm our commitment to honoring the arts and to celebrating its most imaginative and thought-provoking practitioners,” said Japan Art Association chairman Hisashi Hieda. “The 2013 Praemium Imperiale laureates enrich our lives and touch a common chord of humanity despite geographic and linguistic barriers.”

Candidates for the Praemium Imperiale are nominated by a panel of distinguished international advisors and selected by the Japan Art Association. William Luers, the American advisor, is an adjunct professor at Columbia University and was formerly President of the United Nations Association. He served for 14 years as President of the Metropolitan Museum of Art following a 31-year career as an American ambassador and diplomat. This is Mr. Luers’s eleventh year on the panel since succeeding David Rockefeller, Jr., now an honorary advisor.

“Over the last 25 years, the Praemium Imperiale has done more than any other arts award to highlight the importance and power of the arts,” said Mr. Luers. “Like their predecessors, this year’s laureates represent the very best in artistic expression.”

In addition to Mr. Luers, the advisory panel includes the statesmen and business leaders Lamberto Dini, a former Italian Prime Minister; Christopher Patten, Chairman of the BBC Trust and Chancellor of Oxford University; Klaus-Dieter Lehmann, President of Germany’s Goethe-Institut; former French prime minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin; and Yasuhiro Nakasone, a former prime minister of Japan. The honorary advisors are Jacques Chirac, the former President of France; philanthropist David Rockefeller, the former CEO of Chase Manhattan Bank; David Rockefeller, Jr., a philanthropist and environmentalist; former German Chancellor Helmut Schmidt; Richard von Weizsäcker, a former president of the Federal Republic of Germany; and François Pinault, founder of French retail conglomerate Kering.

The Praemium Imperiale awards ceremony will be held in Tokyo on October 16. In addition to the monetary prize, each of the laureates will receive a specially-designed gold medal and a testimonial letter from Japan’s Imperial Highness Prince Hitachi, honorary patron of the Japan Art Association. Association Chairman Hieda, Mr. Luers and many distinguished guests will attend the ceremony.

The Praemium Imperiale was created in 1988 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Japan Art Association and to honor the late Prince Takamatsu and his commitment to the arts. Prince Takamatsu served as the association’s honorary patron for 58 years.

For more information on the Japan Art Association and the Praemium Imperiale, including biographies of current and past winners, visit www.praemiumimperiale.org