German architect OM Ungers is understood to be among a raft of big names shortlisted for this year's Pritzker Prize, announced on Thursday.
The 80-year-old from Cologne, whose work is frequently characterised by grid forms and relentless symmetry, could follow in the footsteps of the likes of Philip Johnson, James Stirling and Robert Venturi in winning the world's most prestigious architectural accolade.
Set up in 1979 by Jay A Pritzker, the award is 'modelled after the Nobel Prize' to honour 'a living architect whose built work demonstrates a combination of talent, vision and commitment.'
This year's lucky winner can expect to receive $100,000 (£50,900) and a bronze medallion.
Nominations for the prize closed in November last year, and it is believed that more than 500 nominees were put forward for consideration from nearly 50 countries.
An official awards ceremony to hail the eventual victor will be held at The Banqueting House in Whitehall Palace, London, in June.by Richard Waite