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School of Architecture + Planning

2018 Jeff Harnar Award

Jeff Harnar Award

The Jeff Harnar Award honors the late Jeff Harnar, known for his groundbreaking design in contemporary architecture in Santa Fe, NM. During the last 11 years, the Jeff Harnar Award has become known as a prestigious award in the architectural profession and offers one of the top prize amounts in the country, awarding the winner a $10,000 cash prize.

Submissions for the 2018 awards must be from an architect or architectural firm for a singular work of architecture built in New Mexico which has been completed since Jan. 1, 2012. The architect or firm do not need to be from New Mexico and there is no limit to the number of entries per firm or architect. Entries must be completed and received no later than 4:30 p.m., Feb. 2, 2018. Click here to read more about submission requirements.

The award presentation and celebration will be held on Feb. 23, 2018 at 5 p.m. at the School of Architecture + Planning’s Garcia Honda Auditorium, located at George Pearl Hall at UNM. A jury of architects will narrow the submissions and the winners in both categories will be announced at the award presentation.


SHoP Architects designers of SITE Santa Fe win 11th Annual Jeff Harnar Award. First winners of Unbuilt Design Award Announced.

SITE Santa Fe exterior image
UNM School of Architecture + Planning and the Thornburg Foundation announced yesterday that
York City, for their expansion and thoughtful re-imagination of SITE Santa Fe, a contemporary art
institution located in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The project involved redesigning the exhibition spaces
of the noted contemporary art venue, as well as the administrative and educational facilities. SHoP
Architects worked closely with SITE Santa Fe administrative team to develop an appealing and
functional building with an exuberant façade signaling the unique mission of SITE Santa Fe. The
New Mexico based Architect of Record was Allegretti Architects, and the contractor was Sarcon
SITE Santa Fe Interior Photo


The winner of the award receives an unique artist-designed award. The winning architecture firm
receives a $10,000 financial prize, one of the largest in the world of architecture as well as a unique
artist designed award. Garrett Thornburg, chair of the Thornburg Foundation and Chairman of
Thornburg Investment Management created the Harnar Award to recognize innovative
contemporary architecture. The Architecture Department at the University of New Mexico’s School
of Architecture + Planning manages the award and event.
Japanese architect Yuko Nagayama of Tokyo served as the jury chair, and the speaker for 2018
Harnar Lecture. Her lecture was entitled “Architecture as a Trigger.” She describes her design
process as focused on phenomena, stating “if you focus on the immaterial, the material will fall into


Other jurors included Kory Bieg, Principal of OTA+ and an Assistant Professor of Architecture at
the University of Texas-Austin; E.B. Min, Principal at Min | Day in San Francisco and Omaha; Kima
Wakefield, UNM Senior Lecturer of Architecture; and Aaron Zahm, from MRWM Landscape
Architects in Albuquerque. UNM Architecture Chair and Professor John Quale serves as the
Director of the Jeff Harnar Award.


For the first time this year, the Jeff Harnar Award included two Unbuilt Design categories: one in
Unbuilt Architecture and the other in Unbuilt Landscape Architecture. The designs can be intended
to be built anywhere in the world, but the submissions are limited to designers living in New Mexico.
The winner of Jeff Harnar Unbuilt Architecture Award went to University of New Mexico Master of
Architecture student Darby Prendergast, for his theoretical project “Vertical Cemetery for Extinct
Species.” Prendergast’s provocative and intriguing design was completed in a Masters Design
Studio taught by UNM Principal Lecturer Karen King.

Darby Prendergast Rendering


The winner of Unbuilt Landscape Architecture category was Surroundings Studio, for their project
“Murchison Rogers Park,” sited in El Paso, Texas. Kenneth Francis, one of the principals of the
firm, worked with Will Iadevaia and Carly Piccarello on the design. The jury appreciated the
strategic integration of the design into a complex topographic condition that both addressed
technical issues and the importance of a comfortable experience for visitors to an extraordinary site.

Surroundings Studio Rendering


Both professionals and architecture students submitted projects to the new Jeff Harnar Unbuilt
Design award. The awards honor the late Jeff Harnar, known for his groundbreaking design in
contemporary architecture in New Mexico.