2021 A' design award and competition winners announced!

Tim Spears
Add to favorites

A record 2,094 winners from 108 countries have been recognized by the 2021 A’ design award and competition edition.

The annual platform recognizes and promotes the very best products, projects, services and their creators, in turn spurring global design and creativity to higher levels. 2021 continued this notion with winners spread across 104 different design disciplines, including furniture, decorative items and homeware design; building and structure design; and interior space and exhibition design. Designboom curates a selection of winning projects, below, but see the full set of 2021 winners, here https://competition.adesignaward.com/winners.php.

The winners were carefully and duly picked by a panel of renowned jury members, composed of established press, creative professionals and more. Each one is rewarded with the A’ design award – a symbol of excellence in the international design industry. These are divided into five different distinctions: platinum, gold, silver, bronze and iron. Laureates benefit from a highly sought after winners kit, including a trophy, certificate and book, as well as both PR and marketing services. Finally, winners are invited to attend a gala-night and award ceremony in Italy that offers a perfect opportunity for networking.

With the show setting on the 2021 edition, entries into the A’ design award and competition 2022 are now open. Inspired designers, artists, architects, companies and entrepreneurs alike can register and submit their work now, here https://competition.adesignaward.com/registration.php.

Name: living the noom

Architect: Sanzpont

Award: platinum

Category: architecture, building and structure design

Set for construction in Cancun, Mexico in june 2021, living the noom by Sanzpont Arquitectura is a conceptual housing proposal that breaks the mold. It aims to create a community that values nature, art and animals on three main levels: wellness living, sustainability and flexible living. The organic towers offer four habitable stories topped with a penthouse and roof terrace. Lush gardens and a pool surround the houses on the ground.

Name: shelter

Designer: João Teixeira

Award: platinum

Category: furniture, decorative items and homeware design

The shelter desk by João Teixeira unites function and aesthetics in the home office. It improves users’ productivity with an organized layout of elements, including hidden cable management and easy storage access to keep surfaces clean. The structure itself is shaped with rounded corners and aligned parts to create a seamless, singular design.

Name: wandering in the woods

Designer: L and M Design lab

Award: platinum

Category: interior space, retail and exhibition design

In South China, L and M Design lab transforms a large, poorly lit structure into the wandering in the woods kindergarten. A three-storey atrium floods the spaces with natural light, including all of the classrooms. Its structural columns become trees whereas beams become bridges for a forest-like spatial effect. The stairs and slides spiral around these ‘trees’, connecting different areas and even special ‘tree houses’ where children can privately read and complete homework.

Name: apex

Designer: Peter Ellis and Gabriel Tam

Award: golden

Category: lighting products and projects design

Peter Ellis and Gabriel Tam design the apex cordless lamp as a celebration of the 25-year anniversary of the NEOZ magill lamp. Its pure geometric form remains similar, with the internal cone helping to emit a warm ambience perfect as a task light. The glare-free downlight is suited for any tablescape, from hospitality to residential use. Made from either solid brass or anodized aluminum in six colorways, the design is tactile to handle and simple to recharge.

Name: villa 22

Architect: Dreessen Willemse Architecten

Award: platinum

Category: architecture, building and structure design

Completed in 2019 near the Meuse river in the South of the Netherlands, villa 22 by Dreessen Willemse Architecten sits on a slope of 22 degrees. Nature is only a step away, and water is a key feature for the private home as well as its actual construction. With a geometric interplay, there is an alliance between the hard, unyielding nature of the concrete, the warm appearance of the elm wood and the rippling water of the swimming pool.

Name: memoria

Designer: Sergio Sesmero

Award: golden

Category: furniture, decorative items and homeware design

Memoria by Sergio Sesmero is a mysterious, surprising chair. It appears as if a literal balance between maximalist and minimalist, revelation and concealment. Although seemingly impossible, users sit on a durable, supportive concrete fabric. This is manufactured through a 3D-printed PLA mold, which is fully recyclable and reusable.

Name: zhongshuge

Designer: Li Xiang

Award: golden

Category: interior space, retail and exhibition design

Located in the city of Dujiangyan, China, Zhongshuge by Xiang Li is a bookshop inspired by the area’s affinity with water. The local landscape is recreated inside to depict an elegant yet powerful artistic setting. Grey tiled bookshelves welcome guests, extending into adjacent columns to form the actual fabric of the space. These shelves rise up over two floors, providing many quiet areas to sit and read.

Name: be water

Designer: Fernando Correa Granados

Award: platinum

Category: lighting products and projects design

Be water by Fernando Correa Granados is a lamp inspired by the continuous, soothing and hypnotic effect of sunlight when reflected upon moving water, as seen under bridges or against boats’ hulls for example. Like fire or air, other effects for this kinetic wall wash are also possible with different colors. The decorative LED is installed inside a light cove or behind furniture. Light is then refracted through a deformed glass cylinder that rotates on its axis and projects upwards.

Name: shuifa-white marble in the wilderness

Architect: Gun Wen

Award: platinum

Category: architecture, building and structure design

Near the city of Jinan, China, the name of the shuifa-white marble in the wilderness by Gun Wen speaks volumes. Four stones sit against a messy, mixed landscape of high-voltage line towers and weed-strewn farmland. The pavement leading to the buildings appear as if streams of clear spring water flowing from the cracks of the rocks. Inside, the stones contain residential sales and property expos as well as offices.

Name: vague

Designer: Rodrigo Erthal

Award: platinum

Category: furniture, decorative items and homeware design

French for wave, vague by Rodrigo Erthal is a stool that ripples with lighting and negative space. Its visual lightness embraces its bare essentials. The metal-cast structure is de-constructed yet curves to form the stool’s shape. This changes from every angle of perspective.

Name: the westin miyako kyoto chapel

Designer: Katori Archi + Design Associates

Award: golden

Category: interior space, retail and exhibition design

In the namesake hotel founded 130 years ago in Japan, the westin miyako kyoto chapel by Katori Archi + Design Associates pays respect to the natural surroundings with an abundance of rock and wood. The design still incorporates traditional japanese shrine and temple architecture. Its ceiling of wooden lattice interwoven with indirect lighting gives the impression of sunlight pouring through the branches of trees, bathing the worshippers in a sense of wilderness.

Name: translucence

Designer: Iestyn Davies

Award: golden

Category: lighting products and projects design

London-based glassmaker and lighting designer Iestyn Davies’ translucence pendant light enriches the traditional craft-based technique of hot glass. Each sculptural piece is bespoke thanks to the unique properties and variable thickness of the optical glass. Its LED cob technology means even the light source is hidden from view.

Name: mountain house in mist

Architect: Lin Chen

Award: golden

Category: architecture, building and structure design

Located in the Wuji Hills of China, the mountain house in mist by Len Chen hopes to encourage more visitors to the ancient village. The design combines traditional culture and modern design as a place for locals, tourists and more to relax and read. Translucent polycarbonate board lines the façade to create a light, welcoming space during the day and a beacon at night as its light glows outwards.

Name: spring

Designer: Navid Ghandili

Award: golden

Category: furniture, decorative items and homeware design

With living spaces smaller, the spring chair by Navid Ghandili adapts to the lack of room at home. The wooden chair – available in oak wood with natural or white colors – is inspired by a flower bud that springs to reveal more. Just one push activates compression springs inside, turning the design into a chair, two chairs or even a table.

Name: ice cave

Designer: Omid Amini and Fatemeh Salehi Amiri

Award: golden

Category: interior space, retail and exhibition design

Set to be transformed into an event hall in Tehran, Iran, ice cave by Omid Amini and Fatemeh Salehi Amiri is designed with a mobile layout as well as movable furnishings. The white, tiled undulating roof and columns organically form two skylights that flood the cave-like space with natural lighting. It creates a large, open space for visitors to gather in.

Name: obj01

Designer: MANU BAÑÓ

Award: golden

Category: lighting products and projects design

The obj01 by MANU BAÑÓ is a lamp that strips away the complexity of design. A plate of raw metal is laser cut and then assembled by hand with a rubber hammer. It is geometrically shaped: a rectangle forms the structure, the circle functions as the light shade, and a cylinder projects the spot lighting. An integrated custom touch dimmer enables it to be turned on/off from any side.

Name: bayfront pavilion

Architect: Thomas Schroepfer

Award: platinum

Category: architecture, building and structure design

As its name suggests, the bayfront pavilion by Thomas Schroepfer is located in the gardens of the bay of Singapore. It is a public event space that aims to be environmentally comfortable yet visually beautiful, evoking an experience for visitors as if walking under the foliage of lush trees in the tropics. In fact, the shelter offers protection from the elements. there is a mathematical logic behind the design as its structural form and pattern optimizes and balcnes shelter against the reduction of materials and thus carbon footprint.

Name: square and round

Designer: Le Xu

Award: golden

Category: furniture, decorative items and homeware design

Square and round by Xu Le is a flat-pack, multifunctional stool from the 90’s era. Made from wood and acrylic, it showcases the internal structure of the timber, which is a traditional double dovetail key structure. Its transparent surface can be rotated to function as a seat or table surface, as if a holdable for small objects like keys.

Name: fusionista

Designer: CM Jao & Ken Cheung

Award: golden

Category: interior space, retail and exhibition design

Fusionista by CM Jao & Ken Cheung reinvigorates life into an old cinema, transforming it into a more cosmopolitan space with multiple functions. It emphasizes the importance of the ‘experiential consumption scene’ with visual tension as well as control over materials and the lines of movement. The renovation uses various materials, colors and textures – such as leather, copper, marble and steel – to accentuate the dynamism of the design.

Name: cage

Designer: Egemen Kemal Vurusan

Award: golden

Category: lighting products and projects design

Based on the relationship between the refraction of light with glass, the cage by Egemen Kemal Vurusan is a lighting series with an undertone of bondage. The designs are not aimed to illuminate spaces but make them liveable. The amorphous and blown-shaped glass refract light at different rates to create an illusionic and crystalline effect. The rays appear to try and escape its metal trap.

Living the noom by Sanzpont
Living the noom by Sanzpont

Villa 22 by Dreessen Willemse Architecten

Zhongshuge by Li Xiang

The Westin Miyako Kyoto chapel by Katori Archi + Design Associates

Mountain house in Mist by Lin Chen

Ice cave by Omid Amini and Fatemeh Salehi Amiri