Martha Thorne served as an Associate Curator of the Department of Architecture at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1996 to 2005, the year she left to assume the directorship of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, headquartered in Madrid, Spain.
Established in 1979 by Jay and Cindy Pritzker and underwritten by the Hyatt Foundation, the award was conceived as a meaningful prize that would stimulate public awareness and inspire greater creativity within the profession of architecture. Recipients of the annual award, often called the “Nobel of architecture”, are selected by an international jury committed to the art of architecture and its social responsibility. Each year’s winner receives a $100,000 grant and a bronze medallion.
Lord Peter Palumbo of England, a developer and art collector, is the current jury chair. Toyo Ito of Japan, selected (by a jury of seven which included Thorne) as the 2013 Pritzker laureate, was presented his award by Tom Pritzker, Jay Pritzker’s son.
Supporters of the Architecture and Design Network include the Central Arkansas Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, UA Fay Jones School of Architecture and the Arkansas Arts Center. ADN lectures are free and open to the public.