January 24, 2023
Check against delivery
I would like to begin by acknowledging that we are gathered here on the unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinabe people who have lived on and cared for this land for thousands of years.
Welcome to Rideau Hall for the presentation of the 2022 Governor General’s Medals in Architecture and Landscape Architecture.
And let me also congratulate you in my mother tongue, Inuktitut:
Congratulations, and thank you for protecting, preserving and enhancing our communities and country.
Architecture, including landscape architecture, not only shapes our land, but also helps shape our story. Whether a house or a cottage, a school or a theatre, a neighbourhood or a community, architecture tells us who we are and who we want to be. It does so through unique designs, lush gardens and contemplative spaces. They are safe spaces to work and to play and to live. To call home.
Architecture also has a role to play in reconciliation by respecting the land, consulting with Indigenous communities and incorporating Indigenous knowledge, design, techniques and culture.
The recipients of today’s awards have gone above and beyond even our wildest imaginations of what architecture can be. And I thank each of you for your contributions.
You have added great richness to our country and to places abroad, using sustainable techniques and materials. You respect the natural world and our history. With these builds, and throughout your careers, you have created wonders, and I have no doubt you will keep us amazed in the future.
I would also like to thank the partners who have made these awards possible: the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects and the Canada Council for the Arts. We are grateful for all that you do to honour these outstanding Canadians, and to inspire others to excellence.
Once again, let me congratulate all of you on earning this well-deserved honour.
Thank you. Merci. Miigwetch. Nakurmiik.