Ben Pentreath

2023 Laureate

Ben Pentreath New Portrait By Simon Horizontal

Ben Pentreath, architect, designer, educator and author, is the recipient of the 2023 Richard H. Driehaus Prize at the University of Notre Dame. 

“Ben’s artistry and architecture combine to create urbanism across all contexts while he works effortlessly in harmony with the local landscape, heritage, climate and culture of the settings where his work is rooted — lending an aura of both authenticity and cultural continuity to it,” said Stefanos Polyzoides, Driehaus Prize jury chair and the Francis and Kathleen Rooney Dean of Notre Dame’s School of Architecture. “Most importantly, the work conveys a sense of stewardship of the Earth and its resources at a time when an attitude of conservation and investment should be an essential part of the solutions to address the environmental crisis of our time.”

Jury Citation

The jury citation states: “As a luminary within a rising generation of architects, his work encompasses what the prize celebrates most: beauty, durability and commitment to place.”

“The designs unerringly establish a sense of place, whether new or in the transformation of the existing,” according to the citation. “The durable construction, arrangement of interior spaces to take advantage of natural lighting and ventilation and placement and siting in mixed-use, walkable cities and towns and villages offer alternatives to the current notions of green architecture which typically rely solely on technological solutions.”

Additional Information

Graduating with first-class honors in history of art and architecture in 1995, Pentreath excelled at the University of Edinburgh. While attending the Prince of Wales’s Institute of Architecture in London, he won the student competition for his design for the Poet Laureate Pub on Pummery Square, Poundbury. After working in New York and with the Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment, he established his own architecture practice in 2004 and now employs more than 40 architects, urban designers and interior designers at his London studio. His interior design shop, Pentreath & Hall, which he co-owns with artist Bridie Hall, is one of the most influential studios in the London design world. 

Pentreath’s firm has designed residential and commercial buildings in Poundbury and other new towns throughout the United Kingdom, including Truro and Tornagrain.