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09.19.19 – Kinan Hewitt wins Canada’s Prix de Rome in Architecture for emerging practitioners

Kinan Hewitt (MArch 2018), a Daniels Faculty graduate, is the winner of 2018’s Prix de Rome in Architecture for emerging practitioners, a prestigious award presented annually by the Canada Council for the Arts.

The Prix de Rome is awarded to a recent graduate of a Canadian architectural school who has shown promise in the field of contemporary architectural design. The $34,000 prize can be used to finance an internship at a renowned architectural firm anywhere in the world. Winners can also use their prize money to travel to sites of architectural interest.

Hewitt, who is currently interning at KPMB in Toronto, is exploring internship options at firms in London and Copenhagen. He intends to use his prize to engage in research on the topic of co-housing—the increasingly popular practice of concentrating multiple households under one roof.

“Co-housing interests me as an alternative housing model that can address the city’s housing affordability crisis,” Hewitt says. “The Prix de Rome is giving me the opportunity to pursue a topic that I’m interested in and passionate about. I hope I can bring my research back to Toronto, or wherever I land in Canada, and start to apply it.”

While at Daniels, Hewitt completed a master’s thesis, “Grounding the Cloud,” that explored humanity’s relationship with data and data centres in the digital age. His previous awards include the AIA Henry Adams Medal and Certificate (2018) and the OAA Architectural Guild Medal (2018).

Images of Kinan Hewitt's thesis project, "Grounding the Cloud."

"Kinan’s work showed evidence of extraordinary creative ambition," says John Shnier, Hewitt's thesis advisor. "He consistently chose to explore avenues without a direct path to a result and set goals with inherent challenges. His work at Daniels no doubt laid a foundation for a lively and productive creative future."

Another of Shnier's thesis students, David Verbeek (MArch 2017), won the Prix de Rome for emerging practitioners last year.

Several Daniels faculty and alumni have received the Professional Prix de Rome, a separate prize that is awarded to established (rather than emerging) practitioners. They are:

Alumni Monica Adair and Stephen Kopp (2018)

Alumnus Omar Gandhi (2014)

Associate professor Shane Williamson (2012)

Associate professor Mason White (2010)

Alumnus Pierre Bélanger (2008)

Associate professor John Shnier (1987)