Call for Nominations - Bishir Prize

The Vernacular Architecture Forum seeks nominations for the 2024 Catherine W. Bishir Prize. This prize will be presented at the annual conference in Keweenaw, Michigan in 2024. 

The deadline for nominations for the 2024 Bishir Prize is Wednesday, November 15, 2023.

The recipient will receive a full complimentary registration including tours and the banquet for the VAF conference and a certificate of excellence. 

The Bishir Prize, named for longtime member and influential scholar Catherine W. Bishir, is awarded annually to the scholarly article from a juried North American publication that has made the most significant contribution to the study of vernacular architecture and cultural landscapes. In judging the nominated articles, the jurors look for an article that is based on primary research, that breaks new ground in interpretation or methodology, and that contributes generally to the intellectual vitality of vernacular studies. The Bishir Prize was awarded for the first time in 2012.

Entries may come from any discipline concerned with vernacular architecture studies. Articles published in the two years prior to the VAF annual conference are eligible for consideration. Please note that essays published as chapters in a book are also eligible if the volume is peer-reviewed, published within the time parameters specified, and the research presented in the essay is new. Anthologized collections are not eligible. 

Call for Nominations

Does your work contribute to the study of vernacular architecture and cultural landscapes? Have you published a scholarly article on the subject in the last two calendar years? You may be eligible for the Bishir Prize from the Vernacular Architecture Forum. 

Peer reviewed articles published January 1, 2022 or later will be eligible for nomination for the 2024 prize.

To nominate an article or self-nominate please submit the following:

  • A Word document providing contact information, publication data (title of journal, or name of book and publishing company if an essay in a larger collection) including date of publication.
  • PDF copy of the published article including illustrations.
  • A brief statement contextualizing the author(s) and article.

Nomination materials should be submitted to the Catherine W. Bishir Prize Committee at

2023 Bishir Prize Recipient

The 2023 winner of the Catherine W. Bishir Prize is Valentina Davila for her article "Altars of Hope: Venezuelan Domestic Workers and the Material Culture of the Divine," which appears in the Spring 2022 edition of Buildings & Landscapes: Journal of the Vernacular Architecture Forum.

Please visit the 2023 Bishir Prize Recipient page for more details.

Past Bishir Award Winners

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