Snøhetta is an integrated architecture, landscape, and interior design company based in Oslo, Norway, and New York City, formed in 1989 and led by principals Craig Dykers and Kjetil Thorsen. The firm, which is named after one of Norway's highest mountain peaks, has approximately 100 staff members working on projects around the world. The practice pursues a collaborative, transdisciplinary approach, with people from multiple professions working together to explore diverse perspectives on each project.
Snøhetta has completed a number of critically acclaimed cultural projects, including the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Egypt; the National Opera and Ballet in Oslo, Norway; and the Lillehammer Art Museum in Norway. Current projects include the National September 11 Memorial Museum Pavilion at the World Trade Center site in New York.
In 2004 Snøhetta received the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, and in 2009 the firm was honored with the Mies van der Rohe Award. Snøhetta is the only company to have twice won the World Architecture Award for best cultural building, in 2002 for the Bibliotheca Alexandrina and in 2008 for the National Opera and Ballet in Oslo.
Their portfolio spans a broad range of work including residential, commercial and mixed-use properties, civic and academic buildings, healthcare and research facilities, performing arts centres, hotels and resorts, and transportation.
Eberhard Zeidler (Germany, Braunsdorf, January 11, 1926 – Canada, Toronto, January 7, 2022) was one of the last living links to the Bauhaus school and the man responsible for some of Canada’s most significant mixed-use urban developments including Ontario Place and the Eaton Centre in Toronto. He was instructed under the influence of the Bauhaus school in Weimar and the Technische Hochschule Karlsruhe. He fled East Germany and worked in the office established by Emanuel Lindner, his former professor. There, he constructed several factories and medical buildings. Zeidler subsequently immigrated to Canada in 1951.
Zeidler first joined an architectural firm with Blackwell and Craig in Peterborough, Ontario. He later relocated to Toronto in 1963 and worked for the firm became Craig, Zeidler and Strong until 1975. One of the essential elements of his early works is his employment of striking interior atrium space, which became widespread on an international level during the 1970s. Moreover, his experience in the Bauhaus school made him familiar with the technological matters in building design. These included structural and mechanical services (most notably, exposed air-handling ducts), as well as aspects that ease movement and communication. This was exemplified in the McMaster University Health Science Centre, his breakthrough project, which was meant to resemble a large construction set for children. The building utilized regular geometric building modules, coupled with glazed service and circulation towers, internally exposed steel trusses, ducts, and an automated materials delivery system.
Most of Zeidler's structures were public buildings. He rarely designed private residences, drawing up approximately 20 in his career, most notably the four-storey home in Rosedale that he constructed for his family during the late 1960s. He officially retired in 2009, but continued to go to work daily as a senior partner emeritus at the firm, now called Zeidler Partnership Architects, in Toronto. The firm also has offices in Calgary, Victoria, BC, London, Berlin, Beijing, and Abu Dhabi. He also taught at the University of Toronto as a visiting lecturer and critic, before working as an adjunct professor from 1983 to 1995.
Zeidler was appointed an officer of the Order of Canada in June 1984 and invested four months later in October. He has also received the Order of Ontario that same year. He was conferred the gold medal of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada in 1986. Three years later, he was granted an honorary Doctor of Architecture by the University of Toronto. Zeidler was the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal (2002) and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012).