architecture competitions yearbook 2020 report: how to win an architecture competition

Mar 18, 2021

highly anticipated each year, the architecture competitions yearbook 2020 edition once again showcases how young architects and architecture students deliver competition-winning proposals. with the unprecedented challenges and new circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the annual publication from tackles an even more complex process. it overviews various design challenges that all creators face when preparing a competition, while also offering personal, in-depth insight from experienced professionals.

learn more about the winning formula here.

the architecture competitions yearbook 2020 by analyzes what it takes to win an award. it offers an eye-opening opportunity to understand the thought processes behind winning submissions, which are typically hidden behind submissions boards. from expert interviews to in-depth accounts, the book brings the reader closer to the magic formula. it asks what is the secret behind the awarded submissions, what makes a good project, and how to create an innovative solution to the given problem.

the book beginnings with three interviews with esteemed professionals in the industry. their stories explore how competitions shaped their careers. nathalie de vries, founder of MVRDV, acknowledges the freedom of competitions, especially the ability to show their utopian visions of the future. she evaluates how the european competitions helped her co-establish her famed practice. robert konieczny, founder of KWK promes, tells of his complicated path to the present day, from childhood through university to his first competition wins. he notes how failure has taught him much more than victories, stressing the importance of endurance, ambition and originality. piotr kalinowki, founder of MIXD, highlights the need to pursue what hasn’t been done before. this uniqueness, he notes, also needs to translate into a redesign of yourself for every project.

the book then rounds up a selection of 10 international architecture competitions, examining the design process of each one as well as the reasons behind their success. these review a wide range of programs, scales and mediums, such as african shelters proposals, architectural preservation projects, buildings in natural environments, commissioned infrastructures, skyscrapers to conceptual rendering challenges. they include detailed graphics of the winning projects, second and third best submissions, and commended entries. this captivating imagery showcases an array of styles for young architects to be inspired by and to learn how to best represent ideas.

exploring individual ways of working, sketching, iterating and more, the book continues to recount the personal stories of the creatives behind each winning entry. balint iszak and csenge gyorgyi, who won the iceland volcano museum competition, trace every design decision they made. they clarify how they chose the competition, analyzing the site, and the brain-storming of sketches. they also mention how they assembled drawings and visuals for their winning project boards.

the architecture competitions yearbook 2020 displays each winning entry as if a visually, graphically stimulating presentation sheet. it reiterates how a well-made board is key to victory. it seeks to find – and highlight – the illusive formula behind each successful competition entry. there may not be a one size fits all formula, but this book showcases how different architects and students have found their own means to succeed. it is a rare chance to understand and learn from successful individuals.

book info:

title: architecture competitions yearbook 2020


price: $39.90 USD paperback / $29.90 USD e-book