CLAD people

Wolf Prix architect

CEO Coop Himmelb(l)au


Wolf Prix, the design principal and CEO of Austrian architecture studio Coop Himmelb(l)au has slammed design competitions, arguing they “diminish the value of our thinking.”

In a frank talk about the state of the industry and the challenges of tomorrow, made at the World Architecture Festival in Berlin, Prix claimed that “to make a competition is a very stupid thing.”

“I repeat myself a thousand times, but can you imagine 100 or 200 surgeons having to prove they can perform heart surgery, without getting any money?” he said. “Only the stupid architects are doing it. I read in the newspaper recently an investor said ‘I’m happy to have competitions because I get 100 ideas for free.’”

Expanding on the point later in the talk, Prix continued: “I don’t want to work for nothing. It is a diminishing of the value of our thinking. And anonymous competition contributions are making architects slaves to money.

“One of my former students won a competition, and I calculated with him what he will gain after five years. It turns out he will make a loss of E200,000. That means he has to do everything a client wants to pay this back.”

Prix also used the platform to talk about the role of architects more widely.

“As architects, we think we save the client and that we can walk on water. But I haven’t seen an architect who could walk on water. Or we think we’re supporting the whole world on our shoulders. No way. We are really like Chaplin, because the invisible aspects of architecture are suppressing our ideas.”

Prix, and Coop Himmelb(l)au, are known for their boundary-pushing projects featuring structural, abstract forms, such as the Museum of Contemporary Art and Planning Exhibition (MOCAPE) in Shenzhen, China, which opened in October 2016. The House of Bread, a museum and events centre for Austrian bread company Backaldrin, is due to open in Asten, northern Austria, this year.

Gallery
Click on an image to open the image gallery
company profile
Company profile: Gharieni Group
30 years of innovation and German engineering, are the cornerstones of the Gharieni Group’s premium global brand – known for its Mind/Body Verified Wellness Technologies – and the highest quality medical, spa, and wellness equipment.
Try cladmag for free!
Sign up with CLAD to receive our regular ezine, instant news alerts, free digital subscriptions to CLADweek, CLADmag and CLADbook and to request a free sample of the next issue of CLADmag.
sign up
features
Jason McLennan is an environmentalist with a lifelong commitment to well building design
"If you look closely at the walls, they almost look like layers of the Grand Canyon. When you use rammed earth, you get wavy lines where the material has been compacted"

Well building guru Jason McLennan opens his home and shares his thoughts about environmental design with Well Home

The Tree Canopy Walk has platforms designed to ‘lure’ people into the woods
Alan Metcalfe
"When people are a bit scared, they gather together"

Featuring a vibrating glass platform and one of the US’s longest tree canopy walks, Whiting Forest has been designed to bring visitors closer to nature and to one another

Health & Fitness: Working it
"We’ve designed the space so that the atmosphere is intimate"

Les Mills’ new studio spaces at its iconic Auckland City Gym showcase a trend away from masculine ‘grunty’ gyms to something altogether different

Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
To advertise in our catalogue gallery: call +44(0)1462 431385
features
RCR recently unveiled the steel-clad La Cuisine Arts Centre in Nègrepelisse, in France
"Winning the Pritzker is a great joy and a great responsibility"

On winning the Pritzker Prize

Floor to ceiling windows frame the view of the beach at Equinox Huntington in California
Aaron Richter worked for Starwood and Ian Schrager before joining Equinox in 2008
"We’ve been working on the hotel concept for about three years now, and it’s almost ready to reveal."

As high end fitness chain Equinox prepares to enter the hotel market, its VP of design sets out his plans

features
"The Norwegian coast inhabits such beauty"

The world’s most ambitious underwater buildings

The site was cluttered and confusing
"Thomas Heatherwick has a long relationship with Bombay Sapphire"

With a long-standing relationship, Thomas Heatherwick and Bombay Sapphire had a shared vision for the gin maker’s new attraction. We find out how they worked together to create this unique project

The club has been designed to encourage socialising among its users, with several spaces for relaxation
DMAC’s Dwayne MacEwen
"The hotel concept came late in the game, but it was an inspired idea"

The newly renovated Chicago Midtown Athletic Club features a boutique hotel, a pool-come-ice rink and spaces designed by Venus Williams

cladkit product news
Eden project uses drones to spell out climate change warning
Magali Robathan
Almost 300 drones were used to signal an environmental message above the Eden Project’s biomes, during the UN Climate Change ...
Codelocks develops new glass door smart lock
The new lock model allows facilities and building managers to create and manage access via an app or online portal
Megan Whitby
Codelocks has launched its first glass door smart lock to bring intelligent access control to modern spa, leisure, fitness and ...
Alberto Apostoli and Newform collaborate to launch the A.Zeta showerhead
The showerhead offers two modes; rainfall or waterfall
Megan Whitby
Italian architect Alberto Apostoli has renewed his partnership with Newform – an Italian wellness company – and designed A.Zeta. A.Zeta ...
cladkit product news
Mather & Co and ITV unite to create Coronation Street Experience
Mather & Co has transformed the visitor centre into the ultimate haven for ardent Coronation Street viewers
Magali Robathan
Experience designers, Mather & Co, have orchestrated a remarkable collaboration with ITV to unveil the new Coronation Street Experience, a ...
CSI Design Expo Americas 2024 announces new Attractions & Entertainment Technology Zone
The event will allow buyers and suppliers to meet
Magali Robathan
Cruise Ship Interiors (CSI) invites cruise lines, shipyards, design studios, outfitters, and suppliers to take part in CSI Design Expo ...
Alberto Apostoli designs tech-forward Wellness Therapy furniture collection for Varaschin
The furniture collection draws on absolute geometries, pure lines, neutral colours and strong references to nature
Megan Whitby
Furniture manufacturer Varaschin has unveiled the new Wellness Therapy range, designed by Italian spa and wellness architect and designer Alberto ...
cladkit product news
Eco Resort Network conference to convene in Mauritius this May
The event will be hosted in the Mauritius in 2024
Megan Whitby
Hospitality industry event Eco Resort Network is set to take place at the Ravenala Attitude Hotel, Turtle Bay, Mauritius, from ...
Koto Design introduces wood-fired hot tub
Koto is known for crafting modular, energy-neutral cabins and homes
Katie Barnes
A striking wood-fired hot tub has been unveiled by Koto, an architecture and design studio which has a passion for ...
Siminetti unveils iridescent decorative panelling range inspired by plants
The Clematis design
Megan Whitby
The Botanicals is Siminetti’s newest Mother of Pearl decorative panelling collection, inspired by the distinctive patterns found in botany and ...