Bangladeshi architect and educator Marina Tabassum will deliver the annual AIA St. Louis Scholarship Trust Lecture.
Tabassum founded Dhaka-based Marina Tabassum Architects in 2005. In her work, Tabassum seeks to establish a language of architecture that is contemporary yet reflectively rooted to place, always against an ecological rubric containing climate, context, culture, history. Her Bait Ur Rouf Mosque is distinguished by its lack of popular mosque iconography, its emphasis on space and light, and its capacity to function not only as a place of worship but also as a refuge for a dense neighborhood on Dhaka’s periphery. The portfolio of work notwithstanding, Tabassum’s practice remains consciously contained in size, undertaking a limited number of projects per year.
Tabassum is a visiting professor at Harvard University, Technical University Delft, Technical University Munich, University of Texas, and Bengal Institute. She received an Honorary Doctorate from the Technical University of Munich in 2020, Aga Khan Awards for Architecture in 2016, an Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 2020, the Gold Medal of the French Academy of Architecture in 2021, the Soane Medal in Architecture from the United Kingdom in 2021, and the Jameel Prize in 2018. She is a distinguished member of the Royal Society of Arts. Tabassum was named among the top 10 thinkers of the COVID era by Prospect Magazine (UK) in 2020.
Tabassum is a member of the Steering Committee of the Aga Khan Awards for Architecture. She heads the Foundation for Architecture and Community Equity (FACE) focusing on environment and climate preparedness. She chairs the Board of Prokritee, a fair trade organization that ensures the livelihood of thousands of woman artisans of Bangladesh.