2015 Semi-Finalists & Winner

The Louis Vuitton SPARK Award 2015 second jury session took place in S. R. Crown Hall on Thursday, April 23rd. The presentations by the finalists took place during the afternoon and the 2015 Louis Vuitton SPARK Award winner was announced in a ceremony following a lecture by the architectural photographer Iwan Baan. 

Ricardo Fernandez received the award for his project, "Setting the Stage: The Weft", a design proposal to create an east-west connection with a series of public spaces, within the Bronzeville neighborhood in the City of Chicago. Working with one of the area’s local high schools – IIT/Perspectives Math and Science Academy and the Goodman Theatre, this project explores new settings for learning that integrates art into the public realm, where creative collaboration can occur.

A detail of the model of the winning project "Setting the Stage: The Weft" by Ricardo Fernandez

The first jury session took place in S. R. Crown Hall on Wednesday, January 23rd. Eleven submitted projects were presented to the jury by individuals and student group teams. The jury was comprised of Michelle T. Boone, Commissioner, Cultural Affairs and Special Events, City of Chicago; T. Lyle Barnes, Director of Stores, Midwest & Boston, Louis Vuitton Americas; John Mulliken, VP/Store Planning & Development, Louis Vuitton Americas; and Wiel Arets, Dean of IIT's College of Architecture.

Eleven projects from the various Cloud Studios were nominated:

Augmented Architecture: Think, Design, Explore, Collaborate
by Carlos Davalos
Cloud Studio: Somewhere, Somethings: The Space Problem – led by Thomas Kearns

Big-Shouldered Streets and Rivers
by Crina Popa, Lan Kim, Egor Machaca
Cloud Studio: Making Metropolis 3 – led by Steven Brubaker

Branded Identity: Of the Chicago Bus System
by Jennifer Pisano and Suzanne Stawiarski
Cloud Studio: Mobility – led by Robert Bracken and Arathi Gowda

Food City: Optimizing Organic Farming
by Kaitlin Beckham, Richard Hands, Noe Garcia Mendoza, Jose Ponte Neto and Yohan Kim
Cloud Studio: Farm Blocks - Urban farming beyond clichés – led by Winy Maas, Ulf Hackau, Bryant Pitak

Gridland
by Zachary Pena, Jacob Harney
Cloud Studio: Chicago Winter Active – led by Andrew Schachman

Naive Intention: The Tower of Lourdes
by Ferdinand Kuznik
Cloud Studio: Naive Intention – led by Mauricio Pezo and Sofia von Ellrichausen

New City: Redefining City Block
by Kulsum Ishrati, Brittany Mead, Patrick Vokaty, Lan Phan
Cloud Studio: New City – led by Zoka Zola and Dorothea Schulz

Office Space: The Future of Work + Life
by Su Jeong Lee, Eric Schwartzbach, Francisco Alvares
Cloud Studio: American Dreams: Super Blocks, Broad Acres, and Local Codes – led by Marshall Brown

Reforesting the City: Sustainable Density in the 21st Century
by Vivian Brune, Trevor Mauro, Nidhi Desai, Zhehan Yang, Nidhi Desai
Cloud Studio: Reforesting the City – led by Chris Groesbeck and Monika Thadhani

The Weft: From the West to the Lake
by Ricardo Fernandez
Cloud Studio: Setting the Stage – led by Susan Conger-Austin

W.E.T. Zone: Effluent Reuse for Industrial Growth
by Sarah Hanson, Heidi Peterson, Andrew D’arcy, Liewen Kang, Peihao Tong
Cloud Studio: In the Zone – Led by Martin Felsen

Of the eleven nominated projects, six were selected as Semi-Finalists:

Branded Identity: Of the Chicago Bus System
by Jennifer Pisano and Suzanne Stawiarski

Gridland
by Zachary Pena, Jacob Harney

Naive Intention: The Tower of Lourdes
by Ferdinand Kuznik

Office Space: The Future of Work + Life
by Su Jeong Lee, Eric Schwartzbach, Francisco Alvares

The Weft: From the West to the Lake
by Ricardo Fernandez

W.E.T. Zone: Effluent Reuse for Industrial Growth
by Sarah Hanson, Heidi Peterson, Andrew D’arcy, Liewen Kang, Peihao Tong

The semi-finalists will refine their projects according to the brief provided by the jury. Dutch architectural photographer Iwan Baan will be part of the final jury and give a lecture at the Louis Vuitton SPARK Award ceremony on April 23rd, 2015.