League Prize winner

Departamento del Distrito

Departamento del Distrito | En-Medio, Mexico City, Mexico, ongoing. Image courtesy Departamento del Distrito

The League Prize is an annual competition that has been organized by The Architectural League since 1981. Open to designers ten years or less out of school, it draws entrants from around North America.

Nathan Friedman and Francisco Quiñones of Departamento del Distrito won a 2022 award.

Departamento del Distrito is a Mexico City–based design practice founded in 2017 by Nathan Friedman and Francisco Quiñones. Its work operates at the intersection of politics, identity, and the built environment, spanning a wide variety of topics and forms. Across its diverse projects, Departamento del Distrito synthesizes design and research “to expand upon local sites of interest, linking them to geographies, time periods, and subjects that reach beyond their immediate bounds,” according to the firm.

Recent projects include:

  • En-Medio, a free publication series that highlights the delicate status of modernist architectural heritage in Mexico City;
  • Casa Georgina, a residential project that integrates a series of stone ruins on a steep slope in the northern Mexican state of San Luis Potosí;
  • Miracles, Now, a multimedia installation that examines the contemporary state of modernist-era preservation in Mexico City.

Nathan Friedman holds a master’s degree in architecture studies from MIT and a BArch from Cornell University. He is a 2021–2023 Wortham Fellow at the Rice School of Architecture.

Francisco Quiñones holds an MArch from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design and a BArch from Universidad Anáhuac. He teaches at Universidad Iberoamericana.

Departamento del Distrito has been awarded grants from Mexico’s National Endowment for Culture and Arts (FONCA) and the Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo. Its work has been exhibited at several museums and galleries, including Washington, DC’s National Building Museum and Mexico City’s Museo Numismático Nacional. The firm was selected as a contributor to the 2021 Chicago Architecture Biennial.

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