Press Releases

Architect and Scholar Iker Gil Joins SOM Foundation as Executive Director

Photo © SOM

The SOM Foundation welcomes Iker Gil as its new Executive Director. As an architect, editor, and curator, Gil will help lead the SOM Foundation as it focuses efforts on collaborations between students and faculty through the SOM Foundation Research Prize.

“It’s an honor to join the SOM Foundation, an organization that has been supporting graduates and design leaders for four decades,” said Gil. “I look forward to working with the leaders of the SOM Foundation to continue that support and to strengthen the research and development, thereby creating an intersection between academic and professional practices."

Gil brings wide-ranging experience to the Foundation, most recently as founder of MAS Studio and editor-in-chief of the design journal MAS Context. Gil, who is originally from Bilbao, Spain, has collaborated with architects, artists, and designers on projects including the bLUMEN pavilion in Chicago; an installation at Mies van der Rohe's Barcelona Pavilion; and Shanghai Transforming, a book on the city's rapid growth. Gil has curated exhibitions at the Venice Biennale of Architecture, the Chicago Architecture Biennial, and the Art Institute of Chicago. He teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. 

Gil has received several grants and awards, including the 2010 Emerging Visions Award from the Chicago Architectural Club and a President’s Citation from AIA Chicago. He was included in both Newcity’s annual "Design 50" feature, and the book Fifty Under Fifty: Innovators of the 21st Century, published by Images Publishing.

About the SOM Foundation

The SOM Foundation, funded by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, grants awards to students of architecture, design, urban design, and structural engineering. The Foundation’s goal is to advance the design profession’s ability to address the key topics of our time through the support of groups and individuals, each with the highest possible design aspirations and desire to undertake rigorous interdisciplinary research. Established in 1981, the SOM Foundation offers five annual awards across the United States, the United Kingdom, and China.