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Glenn Murcutt

Contact Type Architects (individuals)
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Glenn Murcutt, the son of Australian parents, was born in London in 1936. He grew up in the Morobe district of New Guinea, where he developed an appreciation for simple, primitive architecture. His father introduced him to the architecture of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and the philosophies of Henry David Thoreau, both of which influenced his architectural style.

Murcutt studied at the University of New South Wales, graduating in 1961 with a degree in architecture. After completing his university studies, Murcutt traveled for two years, returning to Sydney in 1964 to work in the office of Ancher, Mortlock, Murray and Woolley. He remained with this firm for five years before he established his own practice in 1970. 

His small, but exemplary practice is well known for its environmentally sensitive designs with a distinctive Australian character. His architecture has remained consistent over time. His buildings, which are principally residential, are a harmonious blend of modernist sensibility, local craftsmanship, indigenous structures, and respect for nature. They are both unusual in character, and yet curiously familiar.

In the words of the Pritzker jury: 'In an age obsessed with celebrity, the glitz of our "starchitects", backed by large staffs and copious public relations support, dominates the headlines. As a total contrast, Murcutt works in a one-person office on the other side of the world ... yet has a waiting list of clients, so intent is he to give each project his personal best. He is an innovative architectural technician who is capable of turning his sensitivity to the environment and to locality into forthright, totally honest, non-showy works of art.'” The Pritzker Architecture Prize

As Australia’s most internationally famous architect, Murcutt has received twenty-five Australian Architecture awards including the RAIA Gold Medal and was named an Office of the Order of Australia (AO). International awards, in addition to the Pritzker Prize in 2002 include the AIA Gold Medal (USA), Alvar Aalto Medal, (Finland), Richard Neutra Award (USA), the ‘Green Pin’ International Award for Architecture and Ecology (Denmark), and the Asia Pacific Culture and Architecture Design Award.

He has been a Visiting Professor of Architecture at many prestigious universities around the world, and continues as a Professor at the University of New South Wales Australia.  He has extensive international lecturing experience and his most recent lectures have been in Pamplona Spain and Tokyo Japan. He has been appointed Chair of the Pritzker Prize Jury.  There have been numerious monographs published covering Murcutt’s work and a documentary film about him has been made.

Murcutt is an Honorary Fellow of Architect Institutes worldwide - including the USA, Great Britain, Canada, Taiwan, Scotland and Singapore.  He was founding President of the Australian Architecture Association and is Chair of the Architecture Foundation Australia which offers the annual Murcutt International Master Class.

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