2021 World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize Ceremony
On December 14, 2021, the World Monuments Fund (WMF) community in New York City gathered at the Center for Architecture alongside cultural heritage and modernism enthusiasts and the American Institute of Architects for the 2021 World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize ceremony.
Presented by Knoll President Alana Stevens, WMF President and CEO Bénédicte de Montlaur, and Jury Chairman Barry Bergdoll, the prize was awarded to architect John Puttick of John Puttick Associates, recognizing the architecture studio’s thoughtful and detailed conservation of Preston Bus Station in Preston, United Kingdom.
Designed in 1960, Preston Bus Station is a prime example of brutalist architecture, characterized by the use of exposed reinforced concrete, and transport planning of Europe’s postwar era. In 2015, after years of neglect, a design competition was held by the building's new owners, Lancashire County Council, which led to the appointment of John Puttick Associates to restore and preserve the station.
“Its original architecture speaks of the civic pride and social mission of Britain in the 1960s,” said Barry Bergdoll, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University. “But John Puttick Associates’s restoration renews the accessibility of the structure, redressing aspects of access not only for those with disabilities, which was much less of a concern a half century ago, but also issues of safety, conviviality, and making one of the most democratic of public services again a veritable center of daily life in this city and the region it serves.”
After the presentation of the prize and a brief informational video about the site, guests were invited to learn more about Preston Bus Station and its conservation during a panel discussion and Q&A with Barry Bergdoll, John Puttick, and Mabel O. Wilson, jury member and Nancy and George Rupp Professor of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University.
The evening was followed by a cocktail reception held in accordance with COVID-19 safety protocols.
Revisit the 2021 World Monuments Fund/Knoll Modernism Prize ceremony and learn more about Preston Bus Station here.