News Releases - 2008
A multidisciplinary architectural firm wins the Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture
Ottawa, January 15, 2008 – The Canada Council for the Arts has awarded the Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture to Manon Asselin and Katsuhiro Yamazaki of the Montreal firm atelier T.A.G. The prize will enable Ms. Asselin and Mr. Yamazaki to study how current socio-economic and political environments redefine the activities of young architectural offices.
The Canada Council’s Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture is valued at $50,000 and encourages the development of artistic excellence in contemporary architectural practice. Ms. Asselin and Mr. Yamazaki will record interviews with young innovative architects and research studio activities, building projects and construction sites underway in Europe, East Asia and New York City. After their research is complete, they will present a multi-media exhibition which will highlight and compare their findings within a Canadian context.
Atelier T.A.G. was chosen by a peer assessment committee made up of Shirley Blumberg (Toronto), Anne Carrier (Lévis, QC), Brian Lilley (Halifax), Graham Livesey (Calgary) and Rhodri
Manon Asselin, Ordre des Architectes du Québec (OAQ), received a Bachelor of Science (1990), Bachelor of Architecture (1992) and a Masters in History and Theory of Architecture (2001) from McGill University. Ms. Asselin is Adjunct Professor of Architecture at the Faculté de l’aménagement at the University of Montreal. She was born in Quebec City and currently lives in Montreal.
Katsuhiro Yamazaki received a Bachelor of Science (1994) and a Bachelor of Architecture (1996) from McGill University. Mr. Yamazaki has been visiting professor and guest critic at the School of architecture of McGill University over the last few years. Mr. Yamazaki was born in San Jose, Costa Rica, and currently lives in Montreal.
As visiting professors in 2007, Ms. Asselin and Mr. Yamazaki recently concluded an experimental studio in material research in the master’s program at the School of Architecture of McGill University.
Founded in Montreal in 1997 by Manon Asselin and Katsuhiro Yamazaki, atelier T.A.G. is a young multidisciplinary architecture firm. In recent years, the company has received five prestigious awards for its cultural projects, including two Governor General’s Medals in Architecture, an Award of Excellence in Architecture from the OAQ, the Institute of Design Montreal Award in Architecture and an Award of Excellence from Canadian Architect.
The firm is distinguished in architecture competitions by its innovative ideas. It has won accolades for its subtle integration of avant-garde architectural concepts, historical heritage and the natural environment. Showing its respect for the environment and the landscape, atelier T.A.G. has developed an approach that makes the landscape an integral aspect of its architectural design.
The associates lead an enthusiastic team of architects who are constantly seeking simple, original and playful solutions to building challenges of considerable technical complexity.
Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture
The $50,000 Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture is awarded annually to an architect or practitioner of architecture, an architecture firm or an architectural design firm that has completed its first buildings and demonstrated an exceptional artistic potential. The prize allows the laureates to travel around the world to hone their skills, develop their creative practice and strengthen their presence in international architecture culture. Applicants must define destinations and activities that will best support the development and recognition of their practice. Proposed activities can include visits to outstanding buildings, participation in biennales, conferences, colloquia, competitions and architecture workshops, and meetings with editors, critics and curators of architecture. The project can involve multiple trips to a number of destinations, spread over a two-year period.
The Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture is one of several initiatives of the Canada Council for the Arts which contribute to the development of Canadian architecture. The Canada Council collaborates on the administration of the Governor General’s Medals in Architecture with the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada. The Canada Council also provides grants in architecture with a view to enhance public awareness and enjoyment of architecture. For more information on these programs contact Danielle Wiley, Architecture Officer at the Canada Council, 613-566-4414 or 1-800-263-5588, ext. 5109, or by
In addition to its principal role of promoting and fostering the arts in Canada, the Canada Council for the Arts administers awards and fellowships to over 200 artists and scholars annually in the arts, humanities, social sciences, natural and health sciences, and engineering. Among these are the Governor General’s Awards in Visual and Media Arts, the Killam Prizes, the Killam Research Fellowships, the Canada Council for the Arts Molson Prizes, the Governor General’s Literary Awards and the Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts.
For more information about these awards, including nomination procedures, contact Janet Riedel Pigott, Acting Director of Endowments and Prizes, at 613-566-4414 or 1-800-263-5588, ext. 5041, or by e-mail. You can also contact Carole Breton, Acting Endowments and Prizes Officer, at 613-566-4414 or 1-800-263-5588, ext. 4116, or by e-mail.