Press release

04 July 2012

The Architectural Association Foster + Partners Prize 2012

The Architectural Association and Foster + Partners are pleased to announce the award of the Foster + Partners Prize, which is presented annually to the AA Diploma student whose portfolio best addresses the themes of sustainability and infrastructure. The recipient is selected jointly by the AA and Foster + Partners at the end of each academic year.

This year's prize has been awarded to Yvonne Weng, of Diploma Unit 17, for her project ‘The 6th Layer – Explorative Canopy Trail'.

Set in the context of Brazilian Amazon rainforest, the project recognizes the reciprocal relationship between humanity and the forest and sees the forest as a natural infrastructure to work with, instead of against. The design focuses on creating an ultra-lightweight, self-sustaining and easily deployable architectural system, which occupies the space at the top of the tree canopies. The extra layer of space created opens up a new territory that inspires new ways in which to perceive, occupy and experience the forest.

Yvonne Weng, and the other six shortlisted candidates, will be invited to exhibit their work in the gallery in Foster + Partners' studio in October, when there will be a formal reception and a cheque will be presented.

The themes of sustainability and infrastructure that underpin the award were selected to highlight themes of common interest to the AA and Foster + Partners and for their significance in contemporary architectural discourse more globally.