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Basel architects receive prestigious award

Bankside Power Station was transformed into Tate Modern by Jaques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron Keystone

Herzog & de Meuron, the Basel architects who designed the Tate Modern in London, have won a prestigious Swiss award for their artistic contribution to cultural life.

Worth SFr25,000 ($15,340), the Max Petitpierre Prize has been awarded every two years since 1984 to Swiss achievers in the fields of science, politics and the arts. Previous recipients include the astronaut Claude Nicollier, the sculptor Jean Tinguely and the conductor Armin Jordan.

Jaques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, both of them born in Basel in 1950, founded their architectural practice in 1978 after completing their studies at the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich.

Since then they have been involved in design projects throughout Europe and the United States, and received international awards for their work by arts organisations in Germany and Italy.

Their most high profile commission was the transformation of the former Bankside Power Station, next to the Thames in London, into Britain’s national museum of modern art, the Tate Modern.

Since it opened last year, the Tate Modern has attracted huge numbers of visitors who go there not only to see its contents but also the building which houses them.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR