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Architecture prizes

From a single family house to the urban space

In addition to temporary exhibitions with extensive catalogs and accompanying programs, the DAM is both a promoter and partner of renowned architecture prizes.

DAM Preis

Since 2007 the DAM Preis has annually honored outstanding buildings in Germany. The award has been bestowed by Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) in close cooperation with our partner JUNG since 2017. As part of the selection procedure by jury, 100 structures are initially nominated, regardless of their type, size, and construction costs. A shortlist of projects is drawn up at the first jury session. A selection of out-of-competition structures by German architects abroad is also made. The jury selects and subsequently visits the finalists’ projects, from which the winner is chosen.

The database dam-preis.de features all the nominations, shortlists, finalists, and winners of the award and as such offers a profound overview of building activity in and from Germany. Furthermore, all the nominated structures are presented in the Architekturführer Deutschland (German Architecture Guide), which DOM publishers in Berlin brings out each fall at the time of the Frankfurt Book Fair. The announcement of the winner, the official prize-giving ceremony, and the opening of the exhibition always take place in late January at DAM. To mark the occasion the German Architecture Annual is published, with detailed reviews of the structures on the shortlist and the winning building.

International Highrise Award (IHA)

The International Highrise Award has been awarded by the City of Frankfurt/Main every two years since 2004. It was initiated jointly in 2003 by the City of Frankfurt together with Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) and DekaBank, since when it has been organized and financed in partnership and cooperation between DAM and DekaBank. The International Highrise Award is bestowed on a structure that combines exemplary sustainability, appearance and interior quality, not to mention urban design and social aspects, to produce an ideal design. The architects and developers jointly receive the prize – a statuette by the internationally renowned artist Thomas Demand and €50,000 in prize money.

Housing for all

Frankfurt/Main is one of the German hotspots for property prices that are rising at an above-average speed. New housing financed on the open market is often offered at prices that even middle-class buyers find it hard to afford. The shortfall in subsidized housing that has accumulated over the decades and the loss of existing subsidized properties are particularly discernible here, too. With the HOUSING FOR ALL competition, the City of Frankfurt/Main, Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM), and ABG FRANKFURT HOLDING are jointly responding to these challenges. With a specific construction site in mind, examples of residential buildings are presented that aspire to represent a combination of economic cost pressure and innovative residential and architectural quality. The question is also addressed as to how the residential projects can result in vibrant, functionally and socially mixed quarters.

The two-tier cooperative competition was staged in 2018-19. In STAGE I, European architecture studios are called on to submit projects for affordable housing that have already been realized. Ten designers of distinguished projects will qualify for STAGE II, which will likewise be conducted as a cooperative competition and which will result in some of these concepts being built 1:1 on a plot of land in Frankfurt/Main.

DAM Architectural Book Award

Every year, the Frankfurt Book Fair and Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) bestow the international DAM Architectural Book Award. Despite growing competition from new media and means of communication, classic architecture books are still the focus of the presentation of architecture. As such, the primary objective of the DAM Architectural Book Award is to determine and honor the best architectural books of the current year and to present them to interested members of the public. A varying jury together with representatives of DAM and external experts judges the submissions according to criteria such as design, concept, quality in terms of material and finishing, level of innovation and timeliness.

All art and architectural book publishers worldwide can take part. As an honorary award, there is no prize money involved. Rather, the prize winners are presented at the Book Fair.

The European Architectural Photography Prize, architekturbild

The European Architectural Photography Prize, architekturbild has been awarded on a two-year basis since 1995. From the outset the competition aimed to promote an artistic, photographic exploration of the built envir0nment. A series of four images enables stories to be narrated; the pre-defined theme provides the direction but at the same time room for interpretation. What began as an initiative of db deutsche bauzeitung has been continued since 2003, the year it was founded, by the non-profit organization architekturbild e.v. 2008 saw the beginning of the partnership with Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM), where the prize-giving ceremony and the first exhibition are held. In 2016 the Federal Foundation Baukultur became the third partner. The competition archive, which in the meantime boasts over 300 series, is now part of the DAM collection. They are all impressive evidence of the fact that architectural photography can be far more than the pure documentation that editorial desks and architects want.

Houses of the Year

The publisher Callwey Verlag and Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM), together with Informationszentrum Beton and the media partners Baumeister, Atrium/Ideales Heim, n-tv and Neue Zürcher Zeitung, stage the “HOUSES OF THE YEAR” competition. The aim is to find the best single-family dwellings in German-speaking countries. The results are published in the book “Houses of the Year” and presented in an exhibition at DAM. Alongside architectural quality, the jury places importance on the addressing of the rural or urban context, the spatial design of a private living area, the intelligent interplay between aesthetics, material, and construction, and not least of all an answer to the assignment single-family dwelling that is in tune with the times. The first prize is worth €10,000; other studios receive a commendation.

European Union Price for contemporary architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award

The architecture prize of the European Union is organized by the Fundació Mies van der Rohe in Barcelona and every two years honors outstanding, innovative, contemporary architecture and visionary architects. It is the most prestigious of all architecture prizes in Europe. Independent experts from across Europe as well as representatives of all relevant architecture institutions and architects’ associations nominate the projects for the jury. As well as the actual Mies Award, the Emerging Architect Prize is also bestowed. Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) is involved in the organization of the prize as a member of the steering and advisory committees.

European Prize for Urban Public Space

The European Prize for Urban Public Space is organized with the aim of recognizing and supporting the creation, recovery, and improvement of public spaces in the knowledge that the state of public space is a clear indication of the health of our cities.

The honorary prize is an initiative of the Centre of Contemporary Culture of Barcelona (CCCB) and is awarded jointly every two years to the originators of and developers involved in the projects selected by the jury. Deutsches Architekturmuseum (DAM) and The Architecture Foundation in London, Architekturzentrum in Vienna, Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine in Paris and the Museum of Architecture and Design in Ljubljana are partners of the prize.

The prize-winning projects, the finalists and a selection made by the jury are published in the European Archive of Urban Public Space on publicspace.org, where the best projects since the prize was launched in 2000 can be accessed by the public.