ISLAMABAD: Fukuoka Prize Committee has selected Pakistan’s first female architect Ms. Yasmeen Lari for Japan’s prestigious Fukuoka Asia Cultural Prize 2016 for her outstanding contributions in preserving or creating Asian culture.
The Fukuoka Prize was established by Fukuoka city which is known as Japan’s cultural gateway, in 1990 as an award which is presented annually to honor the outstanding work of individuals, groups and organizations to preserve and promote the unique and diverse cultures of Asia. It includes a wide range of fields such as the fine arts, literature, music, drama, dance, film, architecture and so forth.
Since establishing the Heritage Foundation of Pakistan in 1980, Ms. Yasmeen Lari has not only created many contemporary buildings, but has also played a decisive role in the preservation and conservation of historical buildings. Moreover, after the Great Earthquake in 2005, she began a rehabilitation programme for the victims, and has been involved in humanitarian aid work ever since. Ms. Lari studied architecture at the Oxford School of Architecture (now Oxford Brooks University) and after returning to Pakistan founded an architectural office in 1964 as the Pakistan’s first woman architect.
Fukuoka Prize aims to foster and increase awareness of the value of Asian cultures, and to institute a broad framework for exchange and mutual learning among the people of Asia. Fukuoka Prize which marks its 27th anniversary this year has so far presented this prestigious award to 102 leading figures in their respective fields. Pakistan’s famous qawwali singer late Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Cultural expert Dr. Uxi Mufti are among the recipients of this prestigious award previously.
Fukuoka Prize is awarded in three categories that include Grand Prize, Academic Prize and Arts and Culture Prize. This year’s Prize laureates include Indian music master Mr. A. R. Rahman for Grand Prize, Historian Dr. Ambeth R. OCAMPO from Philippines for Academic Prize whereas Pakistani architect Ms. Yasmeen Lari has been selected for the category of Arts and Culture Prize.
Lari is the third Pakistani recipient of the Fukuoka Prize with qawwali maestro Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and social scientist Dr Uxi Mufti as the previous winners. Established in 1990, the prize was founded by Fukuoka City of Japan. The awards are presented every year to honour the outstanding work of organisations, groups or individuals for the promotion and preservation of diverse cultures of Asia. The award aims to increase awareness of Asian cultures and to institute a broad framework for exchange and mutual learning among the peoples of Asia.