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Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture Will Go to Michael Van Valkenburgh

Michael Van Valkenburgh, FASLA, will receive the Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture, an award rarely given to a
landscape architect.

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The Harvard Crimson reports its own Graduate School of Design (GSD) Professor Michael Van Valkenburgh, a landscape architect and 1994 Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects, will receive the American Academy of Arts and Letters' 2010 Arnold W. Brunner Memorial Prize in Architecture in May.

Van Valkenburgh is the only living GSD professor to receive this award, which is rarely bestowed to a landscape architect.

Van Valkenburgh oversees the Cambridge and New York offices of Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA), a noted landscape architecture firm in business for over 20 years. The firm's design work can be see on Pennsylvania Avenue, the American Museum of Natural History, the newly opened Brooklyn Bridge Park at Pier 1 in NYC and on the campuses of Cornell, Princeton and Harvard University.

Hugh Hardy, a member of the Brunner Prize awards committee, said Van Valkenburgh's selection is for his contribution to public life in
urban environments.

Van Valkenburgh has been a member of the Harvard faculty at the School of Design since 1982, the program director (1987-1989) and chairman of the landscape architecture department (1991-1996).

Van Valkenburgh describes his creations as "some place ... between the mode of inquiry and research that a scientist uses and the poetic and deeply intuitive instincts of a painter or sculptor."

Gary Hilderbrand, FASLA, an adjunct professor at the GSD and principal of Reed Hilderbrand Associates, Inc., describes Van Valkenburgh's approach to design as "focusing on qualities of landscape and by exaggerating or
by emphasizing."

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June 26, 2019, 12:07 pm PDT

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