A shortlist of 26 finalists in 6 categories has been compiled for the 14th Dutch Design Awards. The Dutch Design Awards selection committee arrived at this shortlist after assessing the submissions. In October an international professional jury will choose the winner for each of the 6 categories: Fashion, Product, Habitat, Design Research, Communication and Service & Systems. The winners will be announced on Saturday 29 October during Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven.
A striking number of young designers were nominated in the category Fashion this year. The new batch is not just visibly involved with the social function and meaning of fashion. They want to rejuvenate the profession through experimentation, material research and innovation. This generation has refreshing ambitions, and so has a real chance of being noticed in the international arena.
Finalists in the Fashion category are: Duran Lantink & Jan Hoek (Sistaaz of the Castle), Nanna van Blaaderen (Woolmark Collection), Futura (Racing Ankersmit – Autumn/Winter 2016) and Liselore Frowijn (Apocalypse Me Now – Spring/Summer 2016).
Consumer products were more strongly represented this year than in previous years. The level is still as high as ever: the products, which often came about through material innovation and cooperation, have been designed with a great sense of aesthetics. The more traditional industrial design was less well represented in the submissions this year, as is clear from the nominations.
Finalists in the Product category are Scholten & Baijings / Studio Wieki Somers / Christien Meindertsma / Kirstie van Noort (2016/Arita), Space Encounters & Lensvelt (Boring Collection), Christien Meindertsma (FLAX Chair), Simone Post (Post-Vlisco Carpet) and MVRDV (Crystal houses/Glazen Baksteen).
The sophistication of the designers was striking this year in the category Habitat. The quality of the submissions is high; the committee saw a large number of projects that actually add to or improve the built environment. However, the impact is sometimes difficult to judge. The committee stresses the role for clients: it is of great importance that they continue to involve designers in the establishment and execution of projects, so that impact can take place on a large scale.
Next Architects (Vleermuisbrug over de vlotwatering), Zones Urbaines Sensibles [ZUS] (Luchtsingel), Jonas Staal (People’s Parliament of Rojava), Harvey Otten & Ted Schulten (World of Food) en Studio Marco Vermeulen (Biesbosch Museum Eiland).
In the category Design Research there were many strong submissions, covering a wide spectrum. The committee felt that the submissions clearly displayed that many designers want to make a difference for the world and not just introduce a new way of thinking, but implement it too. Although the degree of impact varied, the designers clearly displayed engagement in the field of current (political) themes.
Finalists in the category Design Research are Specialist Operations (Uruzgan’s Legacy), Thought Collider (Kindred Spirits), Studio Marco Vermeulen (Dutch Smart Thermal Grid) en Kirsten Algera & Ernst van der Hoeven (Macguffin Magazine).
Graphic design is strongly represented in the nominations for this year. Not so much in a quantitative sense, but all the more so in a qualitative one: the submissions are of excellent quality. It is also striking that the designers more often cross over into other disciplines, like autonomous (art) presentations or even the world of advertising. Many take the initiative for projects themselves, deploying various media and entering extensive cooperation instead of staying within the boundaries of their field.
Finalists in the Communication category are Studio Joost Grootens (Dikke Van Dale), Gilles De Brock (Studium Generale), Moniker (Place A Stone) en Foundland (Failed Futures And Extended Borders).
SERVICE & SYSTEMS
The deployment of designers continues to expand and this is shown to its best in the category Service & Systems. The designers’ social commitment, which has now penetrated all the domains, even commerce, remains striking. The will to resolve problems with the help of design is growing - increasingly bigger and with more diverse cooperation: design as a team sport. In the design process it is no longer just the users of the design who determine everything, but also the people who make the products and supply the service.
Finalists in the Service & Systems category are Service & Systems zijn Yellow Bike (Yellow Backie), Frank Kolkman (Design For Flies), Social Label (>Veeg By Dick van Hoff) en Achtung i.s.m. Pon (Mijn Volkswagen App).