It may be a sign of the times that 2023's laureate, Sir David Chipperfield, has been praised by the prize's judges for precisely the opposite.
"A gifted architect can sometimes almost disappear," reads the jury's citation, published Tuesday as the 69-year-old was unveiled as the latest recipient of his profession's highest honor. "We do not see an instantly recognizable David Chipperfield building in different cities," it adds, "but different David Chipperfield buildings designed specifically for each circumstance."
Although best-known for cultural institutions, like Des Moines Public Library in Iowa, the UK's Turner Contemporary gallery and his reimagined Neues Museum in Berlin, the English architect's firm has completed over 100 buildings around the world.
Spanning residential, commercial and public uses, the understated works are not defined by trademark motifs but by Chipperfield's insistence on answering what he calls the unique "questions" posed by each project.
In winning the Pritzker Prize, Chipperfield joins a list of modern architectural greats that includes two of his former bosses: Norman Foster and the late Richard Rogers, winners in 1999 and 2007, respectively.
Having graduated in the late 1970s, he joined their respective offices as they began to wield "a very big influence".