“Brainy” building wins international design prize

A new prosecutor’s office in the country of Georgia which was designed to imitate the workings of the human brain has won a coveted international architecture prize.

New architecture firm, Architects of Invention (AI), has won the 2014 International Architecture Award for the prosecutor’s office in Tbilisi, in this year’s Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design Awards.

The building, completed in 2012, was commissioned by the Republic of Georgia’s justice ministry in 2011, and was designed and built in just eight months. The brief was to create a workspace for 60 staff.

Director of the project, Nikoloz Japaridze, said the leading idea behind the building was to imitate the workings of the brain.

"What we wanted to show was that the building had a strong core which organised vital legal processes, in the same way the brain manages temperature, hunger, thirst and fatigue," he said. "But at the same time, we wanted to use the glass exterior to mimic the matter which processes daily realities. This contrasts with strong black frames to express the uncompromising nature of the legal system."

AI was founded in 2010 by Japaridze and Anton Khmelnitskiy, formerly a partner at Foster + Partners.

In a statement they said the win meant "a great deal" to them as a new practice. "It also gives us even more stimulus to take more risks and stretch our creativity," they said.

AI has had two other commissions from the Georgian Ministry of Justice. The first was a government building completed in Ozurgeti in April 2012 and the second, a government building in Georgia’s newest city Lazika (pictured), on the coast of the Black Sea, in September 2012.

AI’s design for another building for Georgia’s Ministry of Justice in Lazika (Architects of Invention)

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