The purpose of the Rieger Graham Prize is to advance the career and professional skills of a recent graduate or practitioner of architecture. Applicants must demonstrate interest and training in the classical design tradition and the continuity of knowledge it embodies. The prize will be awarded once every two years by a jury appointed by the ICAA.
The centerpiece of the prize is a three-month Classical Design Fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, the premier American overseas center for independent study and research in the fine arts and humanities. The total award will include Academy fees, travel allotment and award stipend. The proposed three-month stay must occur between September of the prize year and May of the following year. Following the winner's return, an exhibition of their work will be mounted at the ICAA's Cast Hall Gallery for public viewing.
The prize is open to United States citizens with a Bachelor of Architecture degree, Master of Architecture degree, Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, or Master of Fine Arts degree prior to the start of the fellowship.
The Charles Rieger and John D. Graham Architectural Art Prize results from a bequest by the late Charles Rieger, Professor of Architecture at Columbia University.
Rieger bequeathed to the Institute a painting by a friend and mentor, artist John D. Graham (female portrait, Aurea Mediocritas, 1952) and stipulated that the painting be sold to endow a prize in the field of classical architecture.
Possesso Map, by Brendan Hart
Castel Sant'Angelo, by Brendan Hart
Il Gesu, by Brendan Hart
Lungotevere, by Brendan Hart
Campidoglio, by Brendan Hart
The deadline to apply for the 2026 Rieger Graham Prize is Friday, December 15, 2025.
The applicant must submit a proposal for a project involving research, documentation and design, showing how the applicant sees fit to explore Rome in the best way possible for his/her career development. The foremost priority in choosing the Prize recipient will be the project’s link to the opportunity to learn from Rome and its environs in situ.
Application documents must include:
All submission materials should be submitted by email to [email protected]. Hard copy applications will not be accepted.
In addition to the merits of the project proposal and personal credentials, the jury will look for exceptional and demonstrable skill as measured by samples submitted from past work. Emphasis will be placed on hand drawing skills, creativity of projects, and engagement with the key principles of classical design.
The jury will judge such talent against the complementary Vitruvian ideals of strength, function and beauty as revealed by both the conception of the design samples and their manual execution.
The jury will also judge the potential of each proposed project to create a cohesive and thoughtful body of work of exhibition quality.
After completing study in Rome, the Prize winner will be required to submit a publishable result from their experience, which will be the property of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art and which can be featured in Institute publications, social media, and/or exhibitions as applicable.
The winner should intend to provide finished drawings/artworks at least six months after they return from the fellowship.
Candidates must have received a four or five year Bachelor of Architecture degree, Master of Architecture degree, or Master of Fine Arts degree prior to the fellowship. The prize will be limited to United States citizens.
The proposed three-month stay must begin between September of the prize year and June of the following year.
Contact Mollie Wohlforth ([email protected]) or call 212-730-9646, ext. 115 with questions.