The biennial award recognizes extraordinary modern architecture preservation

New York, NY – World Monuments Fund (WMF) today announced nominations are open for the 2018 World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize. Celebrating its tenth anniversary, the prize recognizes architects or designers that have demonstrated innovative solutions to preserve or save threatened modern architecture.

The singular, biennial award was established in 2008 to raise awareness of modernism’s contribution to contemporary life and the influential role that architects and designers play in preserving modern heritage. The first prize was awarded to Brenne Gesellschaft von Architekten mbH for its restoration of the ADGB Trade Union School in Bernau, Germany (1930). Designed by Hannes Meyer, second director of the Bauhaus, and Hans Wittwer of the Bauhaus architecture department, the ADGB School is a seminal modern building whose survival was unknown to Western architectural historians for decades. Other winning projects have included the Zonnestraal Sanatorium in the Netherlands, the Architectural Consortium for Hizuchi Elementary School in Japan, the Viipuri Library in Russia, and the Justus van Effen complex in the Netherlands.

Viipuri Library in Russia. Courtesy of the World Monuments Fund

Viipuri Library in Russia. Courtesy of the World Monuments Fund

Nominated projects for 2018 must have been completed in the last five years and faced threats that affected the site before preservation. Projects that have enhanced a site’s architectural, functional, economic, and environmental sustainability while also benefiting the community are encouraged. There are no geographic restrictions, and the deadline for nominations is June 15, 2018.

An independent jury of architectural scholars, conservators, and professionals will select the prize winner. The jury is chaired by Barry Bergdoll, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University and Curator of Architecture and Design at the Museum of Modern Art. The prize winner as well as a selection of honorable mentions will be announced fall 2018.

World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize is part of WMF’s broader programming to address the challenges faced by modern sites through advocacy, education, and conservation, which today includes the World Monuments Watch and Modern Century. The prize originated from WMF’s Modernism at Risk initiative, which was created in response to increasing threats to modern buildings, including neglect, perceived obsolescence, inappropriate alterations, and demolition.

To learn more and submit a nomination, visit