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Association of German Architects BDA Hessen awards ten buildings

Under the title "Large Houses, Small Houses - Excellent Architecture in Hessen 2018-2023", ten buildings will be awarded the "Martin Elsaesser Plaque" in 2023. Among them is the Frankfurt Pavilion, the cultural and political stage of Frankfurter Buchmesse on the Agora. To help mark the 70th Book Fair in 2018, the design of the building was awarded to the renowned Frankfurt architectural firm schneider+schumacher. With its 500 square metres of floor space, 6.5 metres in height and a self-supporting wooden construction with a translucent membrane, the Frankfurt Pavilion has become a landmark of the book fair. At the same time, the pavilion provides a discreet shield from the hustle and bustle of the fair and allows visitors some time to focus and reflect. In October 2022, events were held here on current cultural-political topics, including the defensibility of democracies, diversity in the media and arts, Russia's war of aggression on Ukraine and Russian opposition in exile. 

In its statement, the jury praised the "astonishingly simple and at the same time clever joining of three shell-shaped bodies in a wooden ribbed construction". It creates a special and surprising atmosphere inside the Frankfurt Pavilion.

"It’s a real honour for us to receive this recognition for the iconic Frankfurt Pavilion. Literature needs good places was our guiding idea here. The office schneider+schumacher and Frankfurter Buchmesse as the client opted for this flying structure with a self-supporting wooden construction and with sustainability utmost in our minds. The Martin Elsaesser plaque confirms that we will continue to invest courageously in new buildings and stands in the future", says Lars Birken-Bertsch, Head of Cooperations & Programmes at Frankfurter Buchmesse, about the award.

The Frankfurt Pavilion has already received these awards: 

Design Educates Awards 2021, Honorable mention

AIT Award, Finalist

DAM Award 2019, Nomination

Iconic Awards 2019


International Design Awards, Gold

Gute Gestaltung 19, Bronze

Link to the pavilion:   (opens in a new window)

About the Martin Elsaesser plaque 

Submitted to the jury session of the Martin Elsaesser Plaque 2023 were buildings of any size and use completed between 2018 and January 2023 and located in the cities of Frankfurt am Main or Offenbach am Main or in the districts of Offenbach or Main-Kinzig.

The 2023 jury consisted of:

Bernhard Bangert, architect BDA, Hochheim am Main, chairman BDA Wiesbaden

Jan Friedrich, journalist (Bauwelt)

Ute Günzel, architect BDA, Darmstadt

Prof. Heinrich Lessing, Architect BDA, Mainz, Frankfurt UAS

Dilek Ruf, architect BDA, Hanover, regional chairwoman BDA Lower Saxony

These ten buildings were awarded prizes: 

LUC - conversion and extension of a terraced house, Frankfurt am Main

Stylepark - New building at Peterskirchhof, Frankfurt am Main

Schloßstraße, Frankfurt am Main

Hof im Hof, Frankfurt am Main

Gymnasium Schillerschule sports hall, Frankfurt am Main

Redesign of Senckenberg, Frankfurt am Main

Deutsches Romantik-Museum, Frankfurt am Main

Hainburg Town Hall, Hainburg

New office of the BDA Hessen - conversion, Frankfurt am Main

Frankfurt Pavilion, Frankfurt am Main

The plaques will be presented to the clients and architects of the award-winning buildings on Friday, 5 May 2023 at the interim headquarters of the Deutsches Architekturmuseum DAM in Frankfurt am Main.

Ansicht des Frankfurt Pavilion der Frankfurter Buchmesse