Golden Cubes Nominees Announced


Inaugural awards program yields four National Nominees and five Jury Special Recognition citations

CHICAGO – The Association of Architecture Organizations (AAO) announced today four National Nominees that will represent the United States in the international phase of the inaugural Architecture & Children Golden Cubes Awards conducted by the International Union of Architects (UIA). The U.S. Nominees now join other top programs from across the globe as part of a celebration of K-12 Architecture Education efforts at the UIA Congress in Tokyo, Japan, September 25-28, 2011. The UIA will select four final winners in the international phase.

All winning applications are now available for public view at

The UIA Golden Cubes Awards were organized to recognize, encourage, and support those individuals and organizations that lay the foundations of an architectural culture and help children and young people, from pre-school up to age 18, to understand architectural design and the processes by which our environment is shaped. Winners of the United States contest cover all Golden Cubes awards categories, a recognition of the diverse settings in which architecture education takes place:

SCHOOL AWARD: open to any school providing general education, as opposed to specialist or vocational training
U.S. NOMINEE: The Vitruvius Program at the Summit School of Ahwatukee (Phoenix, AZ), offering studio education in architecture, art, and design to children from pre-school age though 8th grade.

INSTITUTION CATEGORY: open to museums, galleries, foundations, nonprofit centers, and other organizations
U.S. NOMINEE: Learning by Design: New York (New York, NY), conducting residencies enhancing hands-on arts and core curriculum learning for New York City-area K-12 school children through interdisciplinary architecture and design lessons that cultivate students’ observation skills, critical thinking, problem solving, and creativity.

WRITTEN MEDIA AWARD: open to individuals and organizations
U.S. NOMINEE: The Architecture Handbook: A Student Guide to Understanding Buildings (Chicago, IL), an architecture textbook geared toward high school students, originally prepared by the Chicago Architecture Foundation for use by Chicago Public Schools and now in use at schools in 41 U.S. States and 14 countries.

AUDIO-VISUAL MEDIA AWARD: open to individuals and organizations
U.S. NOMINEE: (Milwaukee, WI) is a real-world, fun to explore, 21st century learning environment that offers a collection of tools, languages, discovery, and design opportunities aimed at increasing children’s awareness, understanding, and engagement of the importance of the built and natural environments (

“The four Nominees stand high atop what was a very competitive field of applicants,” said Ted Landsmark, President of the Boston Architectural College, and Chair of the U.S. Jury, “The importance of their work cannot be understated. Such efforts prepare students, whether they choose to pursue architecture or not, to become adult citizens active in public discourse, and with minds opened to the needs and uses for quality architecture. Speaking for the entire jury, we were delighted by each Nominees’ highly creative approaches, quality output, and labors to ensure their activities be sustained over time. These are honors well deserved.”

Landsmark was joined by fellow jurors, Carol Ross Barney, Design Principal, Ross Barney Architects; Cheri Hendricks, Principal, Broadview Associates, Ltd.; and Ronald E. Bogle, President & CEO of the American Architectural Foundation (AAF). Graham Stroh, Program Manager at AAF, served as Special Advisor to the U.S. Jury.

Jury Special Recognition
The Association of Architecture Organizations conducted the U.S. portion of the Golden Cubes Awards to bring attention and awareness to the tremendous work being done each day in this area of design education. During the jury’s review of more than 40 applications from 15 U.S. States, a number of very strong programs were identified. The U.S. Jury passed Special Recognition citations to the following applicants in observance of their noteworthy contributions:

Architectural Foundation of San Francisco, for its project Build San Francisco (San Francisco, CA)

League of Women Voters of Knoxville and Knox County, for its project Go to 2033 (Knoxville, TN)

John Martoni, for his project Metropolis: A Green City of Your Own (Hayward, CA)

Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center, for its project Terrace Town "Goes Green" (Madison, WI)

Public Workshop, for its project Shadelab (conducted in partnership with Landon Bone Baker Architects) (Chicago, IL)

All Jury Special Recognition applications are now available for public view at

“The sheer diversity of work in this education sector is an absolute virtue,” commented Association of Architecture Organizations Executive Director Michael Wood. “We thank our partners in this project, the UIA and the American Institute of Architects. We gratefully recognize the American Architectural Foundation for its technical support as well as the entire jury for volunteering their time and talent. Most important, we celebrate the hard work of every applicant, as they pioneer new learning experiences for students every day – ones they will carry forward with them well past graduation.”

For more information about the UIA Golden Cubes Awards, please visit:

About the Association of Architecture Organizations
Founded in 2009, the Association of Architecture Organizations (AAO) is a membership organization dedicated to promoting excellence within the architecture center and design education communities. Through the use of meetings and conferences, reports and field surveys, online discussion groups and other resources, we seek to increase and broaden knowledge among members, and, in turn, advance their work to excite the general public. We believe the sharing of knowledge and experiences is the best strategy to expand public dialogue about architecture, and realize greater awareness and appreciation for this emerging sector.

AAO currently has 50 members, with operations in 32 U.S. cities, plus Canada, England, and India. The Architecture + Design Education Network (A+DEN), established in 2005, is a peer group of design educators that is operated within the Association of Architecture Organizations. For further information, visit or call 312.922.3432 x260.

Posted by aao on March 22, 2011 - 1:13pm