On March 11, The Architect’s Newspaper hosted its inaugural Annual Design Gala in New York, which recognized leaders in architecture, design, and construction in North America. The night consisted of a cocktail reception followed by an awards dinner; both held in the Stanford White-designed Bowery Savings Bank, a sumptuous Beaux-Arts space bedecked with a bevy of classical detailing and a 65-foot vaulted ceiling ballroom ringed by Corinthian columns and crowned with Tiffany glass.
For AN, the Annual Design Gala fills a programmatic void within the design community. “The inspiration for this gala came when I realized that there was no premiere gala specifically celebrating all aspects of Architecture; from the architects, planners, designers to the engineers and contractors,” said publisher Diana Darling. “And, it’s our vision at The Architect’s Newspaper that this is the first of many.”
The awardees of the gala were selected by a 22-person voting committee—many of whom were members of AN’s jury for the 2019 Best of Design Awards—and were recognized in seven categories. Building of the Year was awarded to Beyer Blinder Belle and Planners, INC Architecture & Design, LUBRANO CIAVARRA, Mathew Nielsen Landscape Architects, MCR/MORSE Development, Stonehill Taylor, and Turner Construction for their work on the TWA Hotel; Denise Scott Brown received the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of her decades of leadership in the architecture and design community; Studio Gang was honored in the Excellence in Building category for recent projects such as Solar Carve and Mira Tower; Urbanist of the Year went to Kate Orff of SCAPE and Columbia Urban Design; Leong Leong received the Interior Excellence award; builder Sciame Construction was awarded Contractor of the Year, and Buffalo-based terra-cotta manufacturer Boston Valley Terra Cotta was honored with Innovator of the Year.
In honor of Denise Scott Brown’s Lifetime Achievement Award, AN commissioned designer Vilaplana + Vilaplana to produce Ode to Denise Scott Brown, a vinyl print inspired by the raucous postmodern architecture advocated for and designed by Venturi Scott Brown & Associates over the decades. Erica Hill Studio directed and produced audio and visuals for the Design Gala.