Erik LHeureux wins 2015 Wheelwright Prize

Harvard University Graduate School of Design announces Erik L’Heureux, an American architect based in Singapore, as the winner of the GSD’s 2015 Wheelwright Prize, a $100,000 traveling fellowship aimed at fostering investigative approaches to contemporary design.
L’Heureux, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, is currently an assistant professor at the National University of Singapore and leads his own practice, Pencil Office. His winning proposal, Hot and Wet: The Equatorial City and the Architectures of Atmosphere, focuses on the architecture of five dense cities in the equatorial zone—Jakarta, Indonesia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Pondicherry, India; Lagos, Nigeria; São Paulo, Brazil—where he will examine traditional and modern building strategies that mediate extreme climate conditions while addressing the mounting pressures of rapid urbanization and climate change.
The Wheelwright Prize is now in its third year as an open international competition for early-career architects. The 2015 cycle received nearly 200 submissions from 51 countries, including Azerbaijan, Bosnia, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Poland, Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Zimbabwe, and more. This year, the jury honored three finalists—L’Heureux, Malkit Shoshan (Amsterdam), and Quynh Vantu (London)—inviting them to present their work and research proposals in a public event at the GSD. The finalists’ presentations, as well as a lecture by Gia Wolff, winner of the 2013 Wheelwright Prize, took place in Piper Auditorium at Harvard GSD on April 16, 2015, and are viewable on the GSD’s website.
Born in Jamestown, Rhode Island, L’Heureux received his BA in Architecture from Washington University in 1996 and his MArch from Princeton University in 2000. He went on to work for several architecture firms in New York, including Perkins + Will, GW Architects, and Agrest and Gandelsonas, and taught at the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture at The Cooper Union. After stints as a visiting fellow and lecturer at the School of Design and Environment at the National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2003 and 2004, he decided to move to Singapore fulltime in 2007. In 2011 and 2012, he co-organized an international overseas architecture program between Washington University, the National University of Singapore, and Tongji University, researching the cities of Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Singapore. He has received a Teaching Excellence Award from NUS every year since 2008.
His practice, Pencil Office, has realized an assortment of projects, including residences, restaurants, offices, and commercial and retail spaces, primarily in Singapore. His project, A Simple Factory Building (completed in 2012), a 10,625-square-foot structure wrapped in a geometrically sophisticated sun-shielding veil, earned top honors in the 2013 World Architecture Festival (WAF) Category Design Award. He is also the recipient of the FuturArc Green Leadership Architecture Merit Award (2013), AIA New York City Design Merit Award (2012), and two AIA New York State Design Awards (2007 and 2009).