peter zumthor (photo by gary ebner) & the field chapel in eifel, germany, 2007 (photo by walter mair)

the swiss architect peter zumthor was recently announced as the winner of the 2009 pritzker architecture prize. the architecture world’s most prestigious prize is awarded annually to the honour living architects whose work demonstrates a significant contribution to the art of architecture. zumthor began working as a cabinetmaker and is now 65 years old. he will be presented with a 100,000 USD grant and a bronze medallion at a ceremony on may 29 in buenos aires, argentina. unlike past many past winners, zumthor is quite removed from the contemporary architecture scene, working from his studio in the alpine town of haldenstein. modest buildings that demonstrate empathy for vernacular culture and landscape characterize his body of work. some of his notable projects include the field chapel in eifel, germany, kolumba art museum of the cologne archdiocese, the swiss pavilion for 2000 expo and the thermal baths in vals, switzerland. the pritzker prize jury described his work as ‘an architecture of permanence’.

http://www.pritzkerprize.com

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizeinside the field chapel in eifel, germany, 2007 (photos by pietro savorelli)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizeswiss pavilion for 2000 expo in hanover, germany, 2000 (photo by walter mair)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizeswiss pavilion for 2000 expo in hanover, germany, 2000 (photo by walter mair)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizeswiss pavilion for 2000 expo in hanover, germany, 2000 (photo by walter mair)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizeluzi house in jenaz, switzerland (photo by walter mair)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizesaint benedict chapel in sumvitg, switzerland, 1988 (photo by helene binet)

peter zumthor wins the 2009 pritzker architecture prizethermal bath in vals, switzerland, 1996 (photo by helene binet)