David Chipperfield

Sir David Chipperfield
Born (1953-12-18) 18 December 1953
London, England
Occupation Architect
Awards RIBA Stirling Prize, Royal Gold Medal, Andrea Palladio Prize, Tessenow Gold Medal
Practice David Chipperfield Architects

Museum of Modern Literature, Marbach, Germany (2002–2006) America's Cup Building, Valencia, Spain (2005) Neues Museum, Museum Island Berlin (1997-2009)

Museo Jumex, Mexico (2009-2013)

Sir David Alan Chipperfield CBE RA RDI RIBA (born 18 December 1953) is a British architect. He established David Chipperfield Architects in 1985.

Chipperfield has been recognised for his work with honours and awards including membership of the Royal Academy of Arts, the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, a knighthood for services to architecture, and the Praemium Imperiale from the Japan Art Association in 2013.[1]

David Chipperfield Architects is a global architectural practice with offices in London, Berlin, Milan, and Shanghai. The practice's projects have received more than 100 architecture and design awards, including the 2007 RIBA Stirling Prize (for the Museum of Modern Literature, Marbach), the 2011 European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture (Mies van der Rohe Award), and the 2011 Deutscher Architekturpreis.[1]


Chipperfield graduated in 1976 from Kingston School of Art. In 2008, the University awarded him an honorary doctorate.[2] From 1978 to 1984 Chipperfield worked at a succession of architectural practices – Douglas Stephen, Richard Rogers, and Norman Foster – before establishing David Chipperfield Architects in 1985.[3] As a young architect Chipperfield championed the historically-attuned, place-specific work of continental architects such as Moneo, Snozzi and Siza through the 9H Gallery situated in the front room of his London office.[4]

Chipperfield has taught architecture in Europe and the United States, and has lectured extensively, including as Professor of Architecture at the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Stuttgart from 1995 to 2001.[5] In addition Chipperfield held the Mies van der Rohe Chair at the Escola Técnica, in Barcelona, Spain, and the Norman R. Foster Professorship of Architectural Design at the Yale School of Architecture. He is a visiting professor at the University of the Arts London (formerly London Institute). He has been on the Board of Trustees of The Architecture Foundation and is currently a trustee of the Sir John Soane's Museum in London.[6]

In 2012 Chipperfield became the first British architect to curate the Venice Biennale of Architecture.[7] The biennale, entitled 'Common Ground', sought to foreground the collaborative and interconnected nature of architectural practice.[8]

David Chipperfield Architects

Neues Museum, Berlin
Housing building in Madrid
City of Justice, Barcelona

Among Chipperfield's early projects in England that evidenced his rigorous and elemental approach to design were a shop for Issey Miyake on London's Sloane Street in 1983, and a house for the fashion photographer Nick Knight in Richmond, Surrey.[9] The acclaimed River and Rowing Museum in Henley-on-Thames, Chipperfield's first major building to be realised in his home country, used green oak cladding, concrete and glass to create natural associations with the surrounding area.[10] David Chipperfield Architects is one of the most prolific practices in the design of cultural and civic buildings.[9]

Chipperfield was chosen as the architect for the reconstruction of the destroyed Neues Museum in Berlin, which reopened in October 2009. A new building designed by Chipperfield, the James Simon Gallery, will serve as the entrance for Museum Island, a Unesco World Heritage site made up of five histotric museums.[11][12] In 2015, the headquarters in Berlin had a staff of approximately ninety, and Chipperfield maintained a personal residence onsite.[13]

Other European museums undergoing extensive redesign by Chipperfield include Munich's Haus der Kunst and The Kunsthaus Zürich.[14][15]

Recent cultural projects in the United States include the Central Public Library in Des Moines, Iowa; the Anchorage Museum Expansion in Alaska; and the Saint Louis Art Museum, Missouri.[16]

In 2011 the firm completed two new public exhibition spacesin the UK: the Hepworth Wakefield Gallery, and the Turner Contemporary in Margate. These two projects were seen as heralding Chipperfield's return to the UK after decades of success internationally.[17]

In 2014 David Chipperfield Architects was announced as winner of the Nobel Center architectural competition to design the permanent home of the Nobel Prize in Stockholm, to be built in 2015.[18]

One Pancras Square is an office block with shop space in the redevelopment of the railway lands behind King's Cross Station in London.


In 1999, Chipperfield was awarded the Tessenow Gold Medal, what was followed by a comprehensive exhibition of his work together with the work of the Tessenow Stipendiat and Spanish architect Andrés Jaque, held in the Hellerau Festspielhaus. In 2004 he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to architecture, and was made Honorary Member of the Florence Academy of Art and Design in 2003. In 2009 he was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, the highest tribute the Federal Republic of Germany can pay to individuals for services to the nation.[19] In the New Year Honours 2010, Chipperfield was appointed as a Knight Bachelor for services to architecture in the UK and Germany.[20][21] He was awarded the Wolf Prize in Arts in 2010 and the Royal Gold Medal of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 2011.[22]

"Form Matters", an exhibition looking back over Chipperfield's career, was mounted by London's Design Museum in 2009. His Tonale range of ceramics for Alessi received the Compassod'Oro in 2011, and the Piana folding chair has recently been acquired for the permanent collection at MoMA.[5]

Selected works


  1. 1 2 ed. Rik Nys, 'David Chipperfield Architects' (Berlin, Konig) p.381
  2. David Chipperfield interviewed by architect's head of school, 10 May 2011
  3. ed.Thomas Weaver, 'David Chipperfield, Architectural Works 1990-2002'(Ediciones Poligrafa, Barcelona, 2003) p.326
  4. Interview: David Chipperfield, 'Architecture Today' http://www.architecturetoday.co.uk/?p=12615 14 February 2011
  5. 1 2 The Board appoints new Directors: David Chipperfield for Architecture and Alberto Barbera for Cinema La Biennale di Venezia, 27 December 2011.
  6. Max Thompson, 'Chipperfield becomes trustee of Soane's Museum', Architect's Journal, 16 April 2014
  7. Andrew Gilchrist (10 November 2011), David Chipperfield to curate 2012 Venice Biennale The Guardian.
  8. Rowan Moore 'Venice architecture biennale – review', The Observer,, 2 September 2012
  9. 1 2 Jonathan Glancey (7 October 2010), David Chipperfield wins Royal Gold Medal for architecture The Guardian.
  10. Ivor Richards, '1997 January: River and Rowing Museum by David Chipperfield (Henley, UK)' in 'The Architectural Review', 23 February 2011
  11. Chantelle Lue,'James Simon Gallery by David Chipperfield', 29 June 2007
  12. J.S. Marcus (29 October 2009), Of Museums and Cemeteries Wall Street Journal.
  13. "Urban experiment Berlin". Deutsche Welle - Arts 21. 2015-10-03. Retrieved 2015-10-08.
  14. 'Renovation Haus Der Kunst, 'Architects24'
  15. Kunsthaus Zurich Extension, 'Dezeen' Sept 28 2009
  16. Ellie Stathaki Saint Louis Art Museum extension by David Chipperfield 1 March 2013
  17. Rowan Moore 'A Master of Permanance Comes Home', The Guardian, 5 February 2011
  18. "Architecture | Nobel Center". Nobelcenter.se. Retrieved 2015-12-04.
  19. "Der Bundespräsident / The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany". www.bundespraesident.de. Retrieved 2015-12-04.
  20. "Knighthood for museum architect". Henley Standard. 25 January 2010. Retrieved 24 October 2011.
  21. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59282. p. 1. 31 December 2009. Retrieved 31 December 2009.
  22. "RIBA Gold Medal – 2011 Winner: Award Information". e-architect, UK. Retrieved 8 January 2011. External link in |publisher= (help)
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