Launched in 2010, the AR House awards recognises originality and excellence in the design of dwellings. The house – a key rite of passage for architects – offers the potential for innovation and is critical to the ferment and crystallisation of new ideas. Looking for projects built in the last five years, AR House recognises creativity and originality, and ideas that push the type forward whatever the scale and construction cost. The judges’ chosen schemes will all be visited by an independent critic and photographer before a decision is made on the winner.
The AR House awards are diverse and wide-ranging. Last year, the AR House winner was Davidson Rafailidis' Big Space, Little Space in the US which transformed a 1920s garage into a small house in Buffalo. Other previous winners include General Design Co's house in Kamitomii in Japan, countering the trend in Japan to demolish old houses and build afresh, Habitat for Orphan Girls in Iran by ZAV Architects, an anti-seismic prototype by Edward Ng, Li Wan, Xinan Chi at Hong Kong University, Cosmic in Osaka by UID Architects, and Fayland House by David Chipperfield Architects.