Highlights from the Wallpaper* Design Awards 2010.

The winners of the annual Wallpaper* Design Awards were recently announced. Of the 66 categories, from best city to best hotel and more, 11 of them were selected by a panel of international judges, and this year included artist Carsten Höller, executive James Murdoch, creative director John Galliano, interior designer Kelly Wearstler, film director Pedro Almodóvar and architect Steven Holl. The remaining 55 were selected by Wallpaper’s own editorial panel. (How fun would it be to be a part of the selection process?)

Let’s take a look at some of the winners.

Judge’s Awards: Life Enhancer of the Year – The High Line.

This one did not come as a surprise as in the previous post I wrote about why this was such an amazing place. Joshua David, one of the co-founders of the Friends of the High Line, a non-profit, community-led organization to preserve the High Line and to reuse it as a public park, puts it very well, he said, “What I really hope to see up here this is a really a live and exciting and vibrant and surprising reflection of all of the qualities that make public life in New York so enriching.” Check out the video below as well.

Judge’s Awards: Best Furniture Designer of the Year – Konstantin Grcic.

A designer who prefers to call himself a man of simplicity rather than a minimalist, Mr. Grcic was noted for his Monza chair for Plank during the Salone del Mobile last year as well as some of his other creations, including the Pipe desks and chairs by Muji manufactured by Thonet. Check out his work by clicking on the link below.

Wallpaper* Design Awards: Best Building Site – Tokyo Sky Tree.

This 634m tower will serve as the new TV tower for Tokyo, situated in the northeast section of the city. Set to open in the Spring of 2012, Tokyo Sky Tree will have two observation towers along with restaurants and shops, along with a “town within a tower” connecting a train station with nearby parks and a river.

Wallpaper* Launches the W* House.

Now you can have all of Wallpaper* magazine’s favorite design pieces in one place, at the W* House that was recently launched on the magazine’s website. Navigate through the house by the eight rooms or eight product types and simply browse for your own favorites or get ideas for a space of your own. This collection of products will be updated regularly, so come back often to see the W*’s latest picks.

As for me, here are some of my own favorites in the collection:

Set of 3 soup bowls by Daniel Pirsc of Pirsc Studios in the Czech Republic. It’s just very appealing.

bowls by daniel pirsc.

W+W by Roca, where the washbasin and washcloset comes together. This design re-uses the water from the washbasin as flush water for the toilet, along with an automatic cleaning system.

w+w by roca.

Hay Sofa by Petter Skogstad. Need I say more?
hay sofa by petter skogstad.

Art and Tart Cards.

The July issue of Wallpaper* takes a look at Art & Sex, which is a first for the magazine. One of the features that I found interesting is the art of “Tart Cards,” which are cards that are placed in phone booths (particularly in London) advertising services of call girls. I have seen these cards in phone booths in London before, but never thought that these cards could have artistic value. In doing a little more research, there’s even a tart card book that is sold on Amazon.com. So perhaps it’s really true that this “accidental art” has some sort of cult following. Art is really everywhere you look.

Do check out the Wallpaper* site for a complete set of images of tart cards designed by students and designers.

If you are in London, there is an exhibition of over 400 cards from June 22-29 in conjunction with Type LLP and St Bride Library titled “Typographical Tart Cards” here:

42 Hoxton Square
London N1 6PB