Architizer has crowned BIG, the firm of Danish-born enfant terrible of the built environment Bjarke Ingels, with its Firm of the Year award, citing the practice's "pragmatic utopian architecture" and quick rise to taking on large commissions since it was founded in 2005. To commemorate Ingel's win, they interviewed the former Koolhaas protege on the working culture of his New York and Copenhagen offices, his experience working in the U.S., and his thoughts on BIG's numerous and highly buzzed-about designs (Denmark's blocky Lego Museum and a pair of twisted condo towers in Miami come to mind). Below, check out some of the highlights, including Ingels' thoughts on "getting shit done" and the hard time he's having waiting for the next Game of Thrones book:
On U.S. projects: Our projects at West 57th and Coconut Grove have gone straight into construction. Less than a year ago we got a commission in the Bahamas, and it's already underway. There's something about getting shit done on this side of the Atlantic that's quite amazing.
On Game of Thrones: Right now, the book I desire more than anything is Winds of Winter... It's almost making me depressed to not have access to it.
On Denmark's upcoming Lego Museum: It's been sort of a childhood dream for me. The building is like a cloud of interlocking blocks that will create a big public space, and the roofs are integrated into terraces. The complex is going to be incredibly generous to the city around it.
An architectural crush of his: I would love to have a powwow with the architect of the Sydney Opera House, Jørn Utzon. When I was old enough to even dare to contemplate introducing myself to him, he was already on his death bed.
On Copenhagen's ski slope/energy plant: It's a pretty game-changing project, showing how a public utility that would normally appear as a gray spot on Google Maps can enhance the public realm.
On the nature of architecture: Architecture is the art and science of turning fiction into fact and materializing ideas — so don't just walk around with an idea inside your head. As soon as you put an idea on paper or even in a phone, it somehow opens up your work for collective creativity.
Read the whole thing over at Architizer.
· Bjarke Ingels on Winning Firm of the Year, LEGOs, and "Getting Shit Done" [Architizer]
· All Bjarke Ingels coverage [Curbed National]