OTTAWA ― Ottawa’s Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) has selected Zita Cobb to receive its 2015 Honorary Fellowship, which recognizes individuals who employ design for social change. She will be inducted into the College of Fellows at this year’s RAIC’s Festival of Architecture in Calgary being held from June 3 to 6.
Cobb grew up on Fogo Island, a remote fishing community off the coast of Newfoundland. After a successful high-tech career, she returned home and founded Shorefast Foundation. The registered charity uses architecture, art, design, craft and food to invigorate the island’s economy and culture. Major projects include the world-class Fogo Island Inn, Fogo Island Arts, an international artists’ residency program and Fogo Island Shop, which produces hand-crafted furniture and textiles.
“Zita Cobb’s patronage of a new and respectful architectural culture and her connecting local craftsmen with international designers has transformed the local economy,” said Johns. “Here, new architecture supports, rather than threatens traditions that are disappearing as our society becomes increasingly urbanized.”
Each recipient fulfills the spirit of the 2015 Festival theme of “Re-generation and Integration,” said Barry Johns, chancellor of the RAIC College of Fellows. They demonstrate exceptional commitment “to a truly humanized and sustainable architecture,” he adds.