The Traditional Building Cultures Foundation has been established to consolidate and expand all the initiatives organized since 2012 in Spain and Portugal
The Traditional Building Cultures Foundation seeks to foster and promote the study, protection, teaching, dissemination and conservation of the traditional building, architecture and urbanism characteristic of the various regions of the world. Founded in Madrid in 2023, it will give continuity to all the initiatives that have been organized in Spain since 2012 thanks to the support of the American philanthropist Richard H. Driehaus, initially with the collaboration of the School of Notre Dame, and from 2017 in collaboration with INTBAU. These initiatives include the Rafael Manzano Prize for New Traditional Architecture, the Spanish Network of Traditional Building Crafts Masters, the Richard H. Driehaus Building Arts Awards and Architecture Competition, the Journal of Traditional Building, Architecture and Urbanism, the Donald Donald Gray Grants, and a large number of publications, exhibitions, summer schools, workshops and other activities.
Origin and evolution of the initiatives organized by the Traditional Building Cultures Foundation
In 2010 in Chicago, Rafael Manzano Martos received the Richard H. Driehaus Prize, the largest international award devoted to recognising the career of architects who have stood out in the contemporary practice of classical and traditional architecture. At the award ceremony, Richard H. Driehaus, a great admirer of Rafael and his work, announced that he would be supporting the creation in Spain of a prize in his honour, bearing Rafael’s name. In 2012, thanks to the School of Architecture at the University of Notre Dame (Indiana) and to support from the Mapfre Foundation and the San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts, the first Rafael Manzano Prize for New Traditional Architecture was awarded in Spain. The great expansion of this work came in 2016, when, thanks to the support of Richard H. Driehaus, most of these initiatives could be launched. These various projects were also adopted by INTBAU in 2017 and thenceforth pursued under its auspices.
Activity of the Foundation
In carrying out its mission, this Foundation’s main lines of action are:
Studying, promoting and disseminating best practice in traditional building, architecture and urbanism in fields such as conservation of cultural heritage, sustainable development of urban environments, design of new buildings, and maintenance of each region’s cultural legacy.
Delivering courses, workshops and other training activities in these fields.
Promoting, organizing and fostering all sorts of meetings, exhibitions, publications and audiovisual or other media aimed at studying and disseminating the work and the figures of masters of traditional building, architecture and urbanism.
Advocating the conservation of the cultural and natural heritage of the various regions of the world, and especially the traditional knowledge and landscapes associated therewith.
Organising, promoting and collaborating in projects, competitions and other such activities contributing to the Foundation’s aims or furthering its purposes, as well as cooperating in or collaborating with other such activities.
Giving grants and awards and funding projects, and advising on or assisting in their implementation.
INITIATIVES ORGANIZED BY THE FOUNDATION
Spanish Nerwork of Traditional Building Crafts Masters
The Spanish Network of Traditional Master Builders is an online directory created to promote and disseminate the traditional building trades. This initiative provides visibility -and job opportunities- to the master artisans.
Richard H. Driehaus Awards for the Building Arts
The Richard H. Driehaus Building Arts Awards are a set of distinctions awarded in Spain since 2017 to outstanding masters of the various traditional building trades, for their whole career.
Rafael Manzano Prize for New Traditional Architecture
The Rafael Manzano Prize for New Traditional Architecture is intended to disseminate the value of traditional architecture as a benchmark for the architecture of our time.
Richard H. Driehaus Medal for Heritage Preservation
This distinction takes the patronage of Richard H. Driehaus himself as a model and is intended to honour stewards who, in public or private bodies, have made significant contributions to the conservation of heritage.
Donald Gray Grant for the Building Arts
The Donald Gray Grants for the Building Arts have since 2017 been facilitating the training of an apprentice for one year with one of the masters honoured in our Building Arts Awards.
Traditional Architecture Summer Schools and Traditional Building Workshops
The summer schools always revolve around design based on a knowledge and understanding of the local building, architectural and urban design tradition.
Richard H. Driehaus Architecture Competition
The Richard H. Driehaus Architecture Competition has since 2016 promoted the practice of architecture and urbanism which, on one hand, give continuity to local traditions, and on the other, contribute to generating more beautiful and lasting urban fabrics, better integrated into existing architectural heritage.
International conferences and seminars on traditional architecture and urbanism
The aim is to disseminate best practices in the fields of traditional building, architecture and urban planning at an international level.
Each year an exhibition is organized to showcase samples of the work, tools and techniques of the award-winning master craftspeople. These have taken place in prestigious exhibition spaces, such as CentroCentro in Madrid or the Museum of Santa Cruz in Toledo.
PUBLICATIONS AND VIDEOS
All publications edited during the last 10 years have been collected
Most of these publications, including the annual Journal of Traditional Building, Architecture and Urbanism, can be consulted and downloaded free of charge through the Foundation’s website.
Hundreds of videos have been compiled on the topics mentioned above
An extensive video library with dozens of documentaries, lectures and panel discussions on issues related to traditional building, architecture and urbanism is offered.
SUPPORT THE FOUNDATION
Why support us?
Our work promotes the creation of more beautiful, humane and lasting places along with respect for cultural and natural heritage and for the traditional knowledge that allows it to be conserved.
With your help, we can reach more people and involve more stakeholders in fostering the study, recognition and dissemination of this field.
Donate to help us make these initiatives grow and undertake other complementary ones.