Pritzker Laureate Shigeru Ban may be as well known for his innovative use of materials as for his compassionate approach to design.
For a little over three decades, Ban, the founder of VAN - Voluntary Architects' Network, focused a large part of his work on developing affordable, lightweight and easily deployable materials that can be readily used in disaster relief efforts.
By sourcing unconventional, recycled, inexpensive, local, and sustainable materials, he stimulates devastated economies by involving local resources and labor. These works stem from empathy and have restored shelter and gathering places, offering comfort, protection and dignity to stricken communities around the world (Rwanda, Haiti, Turkey, Japan, Italy, and more).
Born in Tokyo in 1957, Shigeru Ban studied at the Southern California Institute of Architecture and went on to Cooper Union's School of Architecture where he studied under John Hejduk. At age forty-eight, Ban won the 2005 Thomas Jefferson Medal in Architecture from the University of Virginia. He was profiled by Time in their projection of twenty-first-century innovators in the field of architecture and design. Ban was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2014.
Shigeru Ban, Humanitarian Work - Aspen Art Press/D.A.P