Ong-ard Satrabhandhu

2020 Richard H. Driehaus Prize at the University of Notre Dame Laureate Learn More

Jury Citation

2020 Richard H. Driehaus Prize at the University of Notre Dame

For his seminal work in redefining what dialogue with history means in architecture and urbanism, the 2020 Richard H. Driehaus Prize at the University of Notre Dame is being awarded to Ong-ard Satrabhandhu of Chiang Mai, Thailand. His work embraces at once the vernacular and the monumental, compellingly illustrating the relationship of architecture and urbanism, and bringing to light the interconnectedness of the shared building traditions of the world.  

Satrabhandhu practices architecture as a principal of the firm Ong-ard Architects. He received a bachelors' degree in Architecture from Cornell University in 1965 and a master's degree in Urban Studies from Yale University in 1967. His early work clearly reflected his modernist education at American schools of architecture – designs of large scale commercial buildings in Bangkok. His search for meaning in architectural form led him to explore historical sources that conveyed a sense of place with tranquility, and an environmentally responsible culture of building.  This search eventually led him to classicism in its truest sense - the immutable tradition of a given culture and the universal components found across time and place. 

Satrabhandhu’s work represents the shared building traditions of the world. It is vernacular and sophisticated, designed with the classical principles found in diverse places such as Italy and China, Nepal and India. Satrabhandhu has successfully blended local identities - particularly northern Thai or Lanna influences - with the broader experience he gained through research and studying others. His work has a continuous narrative from landscape to architecture to urban design, in a spectrum that articulates nature, the rustic, the vernacular, and the monumental. 

By reviving local building traditions and demonstrating how those traditions can accommodate modern life, Satrabhandhu has created places with serene beauty of their own. He has shown how architects can resurrect traditions, bringing to the contemporary built environment distinction and a sense of poetry.

2020 Henry Hope Reed Award

The 2020 Henry Hope Reed Award is being presented to Clem Labine, publisher and founder of publications, prizes and digital media that for many years have played a key role in creating and maintaining a national network of architects, academics and artisans devoted to the promotion of traditional architecture. 

Labine is the founder and editor emeritus Old House Journal, Traditional Building and Period Homes magazines. For decades, the publications have served as a resource for connecting architects and craftspeople. The magazines contain intellectual content for an audience that includes practitioners and spans a range of sub-disciplines within architecture.  Labine also created the Palladio Award which recognizes excellence in design and the eponymous Clem Labine Award for creating more humane and beautiful environments.

Labine established an audience whose reach transcends the academic, professional and construction industries and dignifies all the disciplines that produce beauty in the built environment. Labine’s work has encouraged an entire industry to thrive, making information and connections available to broad audiences, and ensuring that the practice of traditional and classical architecture could grow beyond the regional to the broad constituency it enjoys today.