The award was presented to him by the Minister of Culture Renaud Donnedieu de Vabre in the presence of the laureates of past years: Paul Andreu, Christian de Portzamparc, Dominique Perrault and others. The prize was created back in 1975, and was renewed by the French Ministry of Culture in 2004. It is awarded every two years to an architect or workshop based on the overall results of their work.
According to Donnedieux de Vabre, this award should not necessarily flatter the vanity of the laureate or honor the most worthy, but is intended to draw attention to the purpose of architecture in France.
Speaking about Ricciotti's work, the minister called his projects "influencing modern architecture", and himself - "a deeply passionate person." His works can be bright and original, or they can be modest, if the situation requires it. But they always demonstrate respect for the environment where the building exists, and for the person, they invariably correspond to their function.
Ricciotti's current projects include the Louvre's Islamic Art Department, the Museum of Civilizations in Marseille, and the Venice Film Festival Palace.