Introduction

From January 15th until May 1st, 2015, registration is open for the 2nd edition of the “BigMat ’15 International Architecture Award”, a prize organized by the BigMat International group, the leading brand of independent distributors to construction material warehouses at international level.

The BigMat Group was created in 1981 in order to bring together companies in different countries of Europe through a mutual aggregation/co-operation formula. The group’s growth and progression is based on four main characteristics:

  • Independence of the business owners
  • Spirit of excellence
  • Collaborative attitude and the sharing of expertise
  • Proximity to the clients

The BigMat chain, with over 840 sales outlets in Europe, distributed over seven countries, namely Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, the Walloon and Brussels-Capital regions in Belgium, and most recently Slovakia. It has a global turnover in excess of 2 billion euros and pays particular attention to the whole of the construction sector. BigMat is always available to support the process for carrying out an architectural project by providing building materials and paying special attention to professional advice.

The group, which directly accompanies builders and takes part by advising and assisting with renovation or construction processes in a sector currently undergoing a great economic recession, has a strong commitment to contemporary society. This attitude is embodied through proposed changes in the urban fabric of cities, sustainable development, social housing or improvements in the living conditions of existing homes. The group believes that architects play a crucial role with great impact on this transformation.

All these reasons have given rise to our interest in organizing the BigMat ’15 International Architecture Award aimed at rewarding excellence in architecture and thus favouring dialogue between the different figures participating in the architecture sector for the benefit of high-quality construction. Attention will be paid to those architectural works that have made a major contribution to contemporary architectural culture through a particular sensitivity on the part of these works in their dialogue with atemporal themes in the history of architecture, as well as in their relationship with energy efficiency parameters, sustainable construction and the quest for greater comfort and liveability.

The prize is open to architects with their professional domicile in one of the six participating countries, namely the Walloon and Brussels-Capital regions in Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Portugal and Spain, and whose works have also been built in these territories. Works will only be considered for this prize if they were built between January 1st, 2011, and January 1st, 2015, in all the participating countries except Portugal, where it will be possible to present works built between January 1st, 2007, and January 1st, 2015, as this country has been included in the prize for the first time in this second edition. All works shortlisted, whether runners-up or winners, in the first edition of the Prize are not eligible for submission in this second edition.

All participating architects will have the opportunity to compete before a panel of internationally renowned judges charged with designating the winner of the BigMat ’15 International Grand Prize, as well as the winners of the five BigMat ’15 National Prizes and twelve finalists. These awards will also include a Special Mention for Young Architects, given to a work of architecture built by an architect under 40 years of age on the date the work was completed.

The on-line registration period will run from January 15th until May 1st, 2015, with the closing event and awards ceremony being held on Friday, November 20th, 2015, on the occasion of the Annual Congress of the BigMat International Group to be held in Berlin, Germany.All the information about the prize can also be found by visiting the nearest BigMat Group sales outlet in each country. All official communications about the BigMat International Group’s Architecture Awards can be viewed on this web page.

BigMat, the nº 1 international chain of independent distributors of construction materials.