Kazuyo Sejima to become full professor of architecture at the University of Applied Arts Vienna

"I am very pleased to announce that, after her successful visiting professorship during the current academic year, Kazuyo Sejima has been appointed as a full professor at our university. This exceptional, innovative architect will thereby continue to expand upon the curriculum she has already started teaching. The students and teaching staff at the Institute of Architecture are very pleased that another top architect with an innovative approach to architecture, art, and design has joined our ranks", explains Gerald Bast, President of the University of Applied Arts Vienna. The professor will begin an initial five-year contract in autumn 2016 as of the 2016/17 academic year.


Over the course of her career, the Japanese architect has already received numerous prizes and awards, the highlight being the Pritzker Prize in 2010. Sejima’s "graceful and powerful, clear and flowing designs" were honored by the Pritzker jury. She was the second woman to be awarded this prize. Kazuyo Sejima was born in 1956 in Ibaraki, Japan, completed her studies in 1981, and founded, together with Ryue Nishizawa, the architectural firm SANAA in Tokyo in 1987. In 2010, she was the first woman to direct the Venice Architecture Biennale.


Sejima’s designs are characterized by modernity and an understanding of space. Her architecture firm, SANAA, builds mainly in the style of minimalism, mostly with exposed concrete, steel, aluminium, and glass. The materials are usually left untreated, any painting is exclusively done in white. Their best known buildings include the New Museum of Contemporary Art (2005) in New York, the Zollverein Design School in Essen (2006), the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion in London (2009), as well as numerous projects in Japan, including the Shibaura building in Tokyo (2011), the Nishinoyama House in Kyoto (2013), and the Dangozaka House, also in Tokyo. SANAA is currently working on the redesign of the Sydney Modern Gallery in New South Wales, Australia. The new building of one of the most important galleries in Australia - in the immediate vicinity of Sydney Harbor – will open in 2021.


"The appointment of Kazuyo Sejima underscores the reputation of our university as a dynamic and internationally recognized centre of excellence. We make it possible for our students to learn from and be guided by the best. We intend to hold to this standard", concludes Bast. There are three studios for architecture at the Institute of Architecture at the University of Applied Arts Vienna, the other two are led by the internationally acclaimed architect Hani Rashid and Greg Lynn.