Architecture & Interiors
The 71 year-old Japanese architect Toyo Ito was awarded the Pritzker Prize yesterday, architecture’s grandest international honor. Lauding him for work that “projects an air of optimism, lightness and joy and is infused with both a sense of uniqueness and universality,” the Pritzker jury singled out several Ito buildings, including the technologically revolutionary Sendai Mediatheque, a public library which was built to withstand an earthquake—and remarkably accomplished its mission under the seismic strain of Tokyo’s deadly 2011 earthquake.
One of the soft-spoken Ito’s more attention-seeking buildings, shown here, is Barcelona’s Hotel Santos Porta Fira, designed in collaboration with the Spanish architectural firm b720 Arquitectos, and completed in 2010. A two-building complex, the site is dominated by a distorted cylindrical skyscraper, resplendent in a skin of red metal panels.