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Top 20 A’ Design Award Winners

Artificial Topography by Ryumei Fujiki and Yukiko Sato

Artificial Topography by Ryumei Fujiki and Yukiko Sato

Double Cross Game Packaging by Mr. Pip

Double Cross Game Packaging by Mr. Pip

The Hex Kite by Wind Architecture Studio

The Hex Kite by Wind Architecture Studio

Heaven is a Place on Earth Swarovski Veil by reginadahmeningenhoven

Heaven is a Place on Earth Swarovski Veil by reginadahmeningenhoven

With a highly respected and influential panel of judges and an award that offers international audiences and recognition, the A’ Design Award & Competition is one of the world’s leading annual juried competitions for design. While design-lovers would be interested in perusing past years’ winners, artists and designers should know: the application period is now open.

The sought after “A’ Design Prize” entails an extensive winners kit including a certificate, a trophy, inclusion in a hardcover yearbook publication and much more, culminating in invitations to an exclusive gala-night in Italy. Winners also receive vital tools for international promotion and marketing such as project translation into more than 20 languages, media appearances through the press partners of A’ Design Award & Competition as well as press release preparation and distribution.

Each year, submissions are judged and winners are ultimately selected by a panel of leading designers, academics, entrepreneurs and prominent members of the press. This diverse group of panelists are selected from a variety of fields for their recognition and, more importantly, their experience and technical knowledge. To ensure fair evaluation, the basis for any proper design competition, the panelists abide by a conflict of interest policy and a jury agreement and judge the submissions anonymously using a rigorous methodology.

Does your work fit in with past winners and panelists’ favorite projects? I may not be a panelist (or even describe myself as “esteemed”), but enjoyed picking 20 winners from past years that especially caught my eye. When the results from this year’s competition are made public, we’ll feature a selection of our favorites once again. Enjoy the collection and best wishes!

The call to entries is now open. Find out more information and register here.

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Graphic Designers Embark on Strange 40 Day Dating Project

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40 Days of Dating – All Videos from 40 Days of Dating on Vimeo.

It’s difficult to tell if it is performance art, a design project, or just a weird way to date.  However you classify it, graphic designers Jessica Walsh and Timothy Goodman have flung themselves into the project straightforwardly titled 40 Days of Dating.  Exasperated with the New York City dating scene, the designers turned to each other.  Each deals with the opposite problem – Jessica jumps in too quickly, Timothy’s reluctant to take the plunge.  The two good friends decided to date each other for forty days – the amount of time often thought required to quit a bad habit.  However, the dating project entails a bit more.  First, there are six rules:

  1. We will see each other every day for forty days.
  2. We will go on at least three dates a week.
  3. We will see a couples therapist once a week.
  4. We will go on one weekend trip together.
  5. We will fill out the daily questionnaire and document everything.
  6. We will not see, date, hookup, or have sex with anyone else.

The daily dating adventures of the couple were then uploaded to their in fashionable design style.  Would love and dating be redeemed or their relationship irreparably ruined?  40 Days of Dating was set to find out.

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Carlos Donjuan Combines Graffiti With Academia In His Figurative Paintings


Carlos Donjuan’s paintings combine his years of painting graffiti with the knowledge that he has gained in academia. By interweaving art history references with graffiti art’s history, Carlos creates a hybrid way of thinking made from art jargon and slang from the streets. His paintings work as narratives that are greatly influenced by everyone from Michelangelo to Alice Neel to Twist to Revok. There are elements in these works that deal with personal influences such as Catholicism, Mexico, Oak Cliff, illegal immigration, politics and family. The portraits not only tell stories, but also document several cultures and movements that these individuals are a part of.  Movements and cultures such as skateboarding, fixies, turntablelism, street wear, sneaker heads, graffiti and Hip Hop.

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Photographer Tim Navis

tim navis crystal2small_905Tim Navis is a talented photographer and a self-proclaimed ‘professional awesometeer’.  Beautiful models and gorgeous landscapes are the main subjects of his imagery.  Life must be pretty fun when you’re surrounded by beauty and spend your time professionally awesometizing.

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Matt Root’s Shrines

Matt Root combines old star atlases with religious and cultural icons, presenting them as shrines or monuments. Through these images he asks questions of identity and ownership within the American landscape. Currently Matt has been focused on objects that symbolize the cultural conflicts of life on the US/Mexico border and Arizona’s tenuous relationship with reality.

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Ceramicist Lauren Gallaspy Creates Fantastical Sculptures Confronting Vulnerable Imbalance

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Artist Lauren Gallaspy creates unique and dynamic ceramic sculptures that play with notions of fantasy and duality. Her work, beautiful, adventurous, and full of a sense of wonder, invokes magical moments of nonsensical, yet somehow perfected, chaos. Her intention lies in finding balance in seemingly irrational binaries. She explains, “the things that I love and the things that I fear refuse to balance out. They scrap like cats, cloak and conceal like kudzu, terrify and delight, like a large, shaky lake or a dog swimming hard towards a floating ball.” The artist uses this tension to create creative and inventive ceramic sculptures, which are not only experimental by nature, but break boundaries of traditionalist methods of pottery. Experiencing Gallaspy’s work is like an investigation. Each color, each angle, each new treatment of material is expressive and fascinating. Her work screams out for a quiet attention, being open ended yet intimate. Her work emphasizes the complexity of humanity, the ups and downs of just simply being. She explains;

“My work is about that imbalance: the vulnerability of living things and the sometimes violent, sometimes pleasurable, almost always complex consequences that occur when bodies and objects in the world come into contact with one another. I use ornamentation, obsessive mark-making, and decorative imagery as a kind of devotional or transformational act, a way to render interior spaces and intense psychological experiences physically.”

 

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Peculiar Portraits Combine Vintage Photos And Extinct Birds

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Sara Angelucci’s intriguing series titled Aviary recalls the past to create strange portraits of birds that are superimposed onto anonymous nineteenth century cartes-de-visite (small, business card sized) photographs. It began by the artist studying the American Victoria area, and she connects its cultural, social, and ecological aspects conceptually to her work.

The nineteenth century was the United States’ colonial era when there was unprecedented expansion, exploration, and an interest in science and art. Family photo albums and commemorating memories were something new, as photography became increasingly common. The collection of cartes-de-visites were like trading cards, and the urge to collect didn’t stop there. People had cabinets of curiosities that included things like taxidermied birds, an interest that lead to the extinction of the passenger pigeon. Angelucci explains in a statement about the work, writing, “Made by combining photographs of endangered or extinct North American birds with anonymous nineteenth century cartes-de-visite portraits—they portray creatures about to become ghosts.”

She goes on to muse:

So how do we read these strange human-birdlike creatures? One could at once see them as manifestations of their time: a hybrid crossover of faith in science with a belief in otherworldly beings. As W. G. Sebald writes in Campo Santo, “[photography is] in essence, after all…nothing but a way of making ghostly apparitions materialize by means of a very dubious magical art.” And, what would it mean to embody another creature: Could one then see, feel, and understand its desire to live? Might we then imagine the Aviary portraits as chimera suspended in a state of empathy, and wonder what our treatment of other sentient beings might be if we could feel what they feel, or see what they see? (Via Observer: Design Observer)

 

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