In order to encourage a greater use of Spanish natural stone and raise awareness of its quality, the organizers of the Piedra 2004 trade show and the Spanish Natural Stone Federation (FDP) staged the Ninth Piedra 2004 Architecture Awards earlier this year.

On this occasion, a total of 57 projects were entered for these awards, including 49 in the “Completed Work Projects” Category and nine within the new “Student Projects” Category. All of them were presented throughout the course of Piedra 2004, which was held in Madrid, Spain, at the Juan Carlos I Exhibition Centre.

Among the projects presented within the Finished Work Category, contestants entered museums, office buildings and university projects as well as residential complexes, single-family homes and gardens. The Student Projects focused on cultural buildings and centers, a media library, a morgue and a shopping centre, among others.

After having studied the projects that were presented, in the category of “Completed Work Projects,” the jury chose “Casa Encinas” by Vicens-Ramos Estudio de Arquitectura. This project was awarded a prize of 9,000 Euros (nearly $11,000 U.S.), and it was honored for its employment of Spanish natural stone as well as its originality and innovation. The jury also cited the building methods employed and the overall aesthetic appeal of the project.

For the exterior of “Casa Encinas,” the stonework is comprised of stone blocks in a raw, unfinished state. In fact, the drill marks made during the extraction process were left intact on the finished product. The use of Spanish stone continues inside the residence, connecting the interior design with the exterior architecture. And by carefully detailing the texture of the stonework and introducing elements of light and water, the stone interacts with the environment in a variety of ways.

Other finalists in the category of “Completed Work Projects” included:

  • “Archaeological Museum of Almería” by Paredes, Pedrosa, Arquitectos

  • “Headquarters for the Provincial Delegation of the Health Department of Almería” by Estudio Campo Baeza

  • “Faculty of Law Sciences (UDG), on the Campus of Montilvi, Girona” by Aranda Pigem Vilalta Arquitectes

  • “Tunnel Control Centre at Piedrafita del Cebreiro” by Arturo Franco Taboada

In the category of “Student Projects,” the jury decided to leave the top prize vacant, although it chose three finalists:

  • “Media Library in Montpellier” by Daniel Atienzar Gomez at the Higher Technical School of Architecture of Valencia, PFC

  • “Arts Centre Belonging to Canal de Isabel II in Madrid” by David de Diego Pardo at the Higher Technical School of Architecture

    of Madrid

  • “Foundation for the Research and Development of the Arts. Potsdamerplatz, Berlin” by Maria Jose Munoz Fernández at the Higher Technical School of Architecture of Madrid

The Piedra 2004 Architecture Awards presentation presented a homage to the architect Antonio Lamela, during which the Spanish Natural Stone Federation (FDP) presented him with an FDP Gold Medal.