Every year at Milan Design Week we’re excited to see what creators and innovators of the future have to offer as part of the Lexus Design Award. And every year we are impressed. This isn’t just a statuette and an honor for a resume, it’s an opportunity for individuals of all disciplines (from fashion to architecture) to work with globally recognized mentors. The Lexus Design Award truly gives a voice to emerging designers and their vision. Design, of course, exists at the award’s core, but the focus here is on the fact that all design is essentially problem-solving.
Entries to the Lexus Design Award 2018 competition are now being accepted through 8 October 2017, with no fee for submissions. More information on the application process can be found online.
From the entrants, 12 finalists will be chosen based on the strength of their concept, plan and prototype. From the 12, four prototype finalists and one final winner are selected. Across four categories (environmental, products, fashion and technology) these prototypes consistently fascinate. The four prototype finalists score a mentorship with a world-renowned professional (this year’s mentors are Lindsay Adelman, Sou Fujimoto, Jessica Walsh and Formafantasma) in order to develop his or her submitted concept. Further, they will receive up to ¥3 million (nearly $30,000 USD) to manufacture their prototype, which will then be displayed at the Lexus Design Pavilion during Milan Design Week. A panel of judges including Paola Antonelli, Curator of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA); Birgit Lohmann, Chief Editor of designboom; Alice Rawsthorn, writer and design critic for the International New York Times and frieze; and Yoshihiro Sawa, President of Lexus International will then assess the four prototypes to choose the Grand Prix winner for 2018.
Previous winners have gone on to enjoy success and further develop their ideas into viable products. Last year Hiroto Yoshizoe won the Lexus Design Award Grand Prix prize for his project Pixel, an electricity-less mechanism that uses reflection to divide light into stackable modules, resulting in mesmerizing colors and pixelated images. Works by additional 2017 finalists included an abstract structure that explores color as an apparition of light (when bent by optical phenomena such as interference, refraction or diffraction caused by microscopic structural features such as the cells of bird feathers or butterfly wings); a modular music toy system that connects everyday objects and encourages improvisation, giving children the chance to experience music as a familiar and enjoyable activity; and a capsule set for mobile living that contains only the essentials needed for a minimal lifestyle.
Since 2013 the Lexus Design Award has been inspiring emerging talent. With craftsmanship, design, innovation and imagination as fundamental driving factors, the brand encourages the next generation to design a better world. As we mentioned, submissions are still open but close 8 October. You can apply online.
Images courtesy of Lexus Design Award