The tenth edition of the Casalgrande Padana Grand Prix came to a close on Friday 27 May 2016 with the awards ceremony, which was held in the Aula Magna of the IUAV University of Venice, in the prestigious historical Tolentini Complex, in the presence of authoritative representatives from the world of architecture and key figures from the design, critique, university and communication sectors. Over 150 designers went through to the final stage of the competition, from all over the world, with high-quality projects demonstrating the increasingly widespread use of and appreciation for ceramic materials in the field of construction. Testimony to this are the very places in which the winning projects were built: South Africa, Qatar, Peru, Russia, Hungary, Poland, Switzerland, France and Italy.
In the Shopping and Office Centres section, first prize went to Zoltán Kun - Kunyho Épitésziroda kft for Klauzal Market - Budapest, Hungary; second prize went to Boleslaw Stelmach - Stelmach i Partnerzy Biuro Architektoniczne Sp. Zo.o. for Zamkowe Tarasy Gallery - Lublin, Poland; and third prize went to Anthony Orelowitz, Vivien Yun, Amir Livneh - Paragon Architects for 115 West Street, Johannesburg - South Africa.
In the Public and Service Buildings, Industrial Buildings, Other category, first prize went to Giampiero Peia - Peia Associati Srl for the Sky Lounge Bar, Kempinski Residences and Suites - Doha, Qatar; second prize went to Giulio Barazzetta, Sergio Gianoli - SBG Architetti for the Our Lady of Mercy Parish Church - Baranzate, Milan, Italy; and third prize went to Airat Sibaev - Tatinvestgrazhdanproject NPF Kazan' for the Medrese River Station (Muslim Seminary) - Bolgar, Republic of Tatarstan, Russia.
In the Residential Buildings section, first prize went to Jacopo Mascheroni - JM Architecture for Montebar Villa - Medeglia, Canton of Ticino, Switzerland; second prize went to Rafael Freyre - Arquitectura Rafael Freyre for Casa Azpitia - Mala, Peru; and third prize went to Alain Demarquette for Aimant si passion – Le Touquet, France. In the Façade Coverings, External Flooring category, first prize went to 5+1AA Alfonso Femia, Gianluca Peluffo - Agenzia di Architettura Srl for three projects: Docks - Marseille, France; IULM 6 - International University of Languages and Media, Milan, Italy; Life - New Residential Quarter in the former Draco Area, Brescia, Italy; second prize went to Labics - Maria Claudia Clemente, Francesco Isidori for MAST Manifattura Arti, Sperimentazione e Tecnologia - Bologna, Italy; whilst third prize went to Roberto Drigo - Studio Drigo for BID-ON FASHION - Shoes Store - Fossalta di Portogruaro, Venice, Italy. Finally a special prize was awarded in the Swimming Pools section to Alessandra Raso, Matteo Raso - Cliostraat for the New Swimming Stadium at the Parco della Gioventù Sports Complex - Cuneo, Italy.
The guest of honour of the event, architect Simone Sfriso from TAMassociati, gave a keynote speech on the themes thrown up by the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale, for which the TAMassociati team curated the Italian Pavilion, one of the main sponsors of which is Casalgrande Padana. Through the vision of architecture as a collective work for the common good and the ability to combine strong social values with professional skills, which is the trademark of TAMassociati's Casalgrande Padana sought to highlight its own link with the world of design and architectural culture. A link consolidated through the Grand Prix, which, as President Franco Manfredini pointed out, with over twenty-five years under its belt, offers a special window onto the evolution in the use of ceramics and the development of design research. These original aspects of the initiative were also highlighted by the institutional representatives - Alberto Ferlenga, the Dean of the IUAV University of Venice, Giuseppe Cappochin, the President of the National Council of Architects PPC, Anna Buzzacchi, the President of the Order of Architects PPC of the province of Venice, and Francesco Dal Co, the Editor of international architecture magazine Casabella - who, in their welcoming speeches, emphasised that the Grand Prix is an exemplary model of collaboration between production culture and design culture aimed at raising the architectural and technological quality of works.
As the President of Casalgrande Padana, Franco Manfredini, pointed out in his speech, "the idea for the Grand Prix was born in 1990 with the primary objective of encouraging the fruitful pooling together and exchange of skills between us, manufacturers of exceptional ceramic products, and the designer, who gets the most out of these materials through creative interpretation and applying them in practice to pieces of architecture. Ever since its first edition, the Grand Prix has had the merit of providing an up-to-date overview of the technical properties and expressive potential of porcelain stoneware products, placing strong emphasis on their flexibility and eclecticism: from the challenges of modern architecture to the refurbishment of existing constructions; from interior design to external flooring; from façades to vast areas of flooring for areas with lots of footfall". The awards ceremony symbolically concluded with the launch of the Eleventh edition of the Grand Prix. The competition is open to any designers who experiment with and make creative use of the ceramic materials manufactured by Casalgrande Padana in their work. The deadline for entries is 31 December 2018. As always, works that have actually been built by that date and have not participated in previous editions will be admitted to the competition.