These Spanish architects, with a vision of popular and artistic architecture, lead some of the most prestigious firms in the field.
A graduate of the Geneva School of Architecture and deeply interested in urban design issues, Richard Bofill founded the Taller de Arquitectura in 1963, one of the most prestigious firms in the field. The company’s philosophy is to rethink urban space, its problems, its occupants and its relationships, in order to offer designs that are in line with progress and modernism. Taller de Arquitectura has worked in collaboration with countries from almost every continent, creating the Barcelona-El Prat International Airport, the Olympic city of Qingdao in China, among others. Inspired by the work of European Renaissance architects such as Jules Harsouin-Mansard and Claude-Nicolas Ledoux, Bofill, a member of the Spanish intellectual movement of the Gauchie Divine, advocates a vision of popular and artistic architecture.
Santiago Calatrava Valls
An architect, urban planner and civil engineer by training, Santiago Calatrava is the recipient of many prestigious awards, both in Europe and the United States. Among his most impressive works are the Bilbao International Airport, the Tenerife Auditorium and the Turning Torso in Malmö, but none of them compare to the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia, an impressive complex of 7 unique buildings, built between 1998 and 2009. As an engineer, Calatrava has often been called upon to design bridges, the most famous of which is the Assut de l’Or in Valencia. The renowned architect is also an artist and his sculptures have been exhibited in many of the major international art museums.
A two-time graduate of the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid, Emilio Tuñón is best known for the projects he has completed with the architectural firm of Mansilla + Tuñón Architects. In collaboration with Luis Moreno Mansilla, who passed away in 2012, Emilio Tuñón won the European Union Award for Contemporary Architecture Miles van der Rohe, following the construction of the MUSAC, in León (Spain). Virtually all of the duo’s work has won awards; following the death of Luis Moreno Mansilla in 2012, Tuñón took over the arcihectes firm M+T on his own and continues to work on numerous projects.
A globetrotting architect, Rafael Moneo traveled extensively after graduating from the Technical School of Architecture in Madrid: he worked with the renowned Jørn Utzon (Denmark), before moving to Rome and then to the United States, where he still teaches, at the Harvard School of Architecture. In 1996, Moneo won the Pritzker Prize, the equivalent of the Nobel Prize in architecture. His work focuses on the arrangement of cubic forms, and his main achievements include the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels (Los Angeles), the Kursaal Center (San Sebastian) and the National Museum of Roman Art (Merida, Spain).