The Lexus Design Award 2015 centered around the theme 'Senses,' showcasing an array of projects related to sight, smell, touch, taste and hearing this week in Milan. The award—developed to encourage broard thinking around the topic—never fails to yield an impressive group of projects and diverse thought from fashion to furniture tech. 2015 was no exception with the exhibition of the twelve finalists. Among the twelve, four were selected to continue with a prototype with the help of a mentor and to exhibit during Milan Design Week.
Senses are intrinsic to life: they are what allow us to perceive the world. Taking this purposefully broad theme, considering seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling and tasting, we open ourselves up to a wide range of possibilities.
Lexus Space at the Milan Design Week
This year's mentors included Max Lamb, Robin Hunicke, Arthur Huang and Lyndon Neri & Rossana Hu. Mentors were paired with the finalists to carry out the development of the project currently on display in Zona Tortona.
Of the final four, one was selected as the Grand Prix Winner from a panel of judges who are notable names in their own right. The 2015 judging panel consisting of Toyo Ito, Paola Antonelli, Birgit Lohmann, Alice Rawsthorn, Aric Chen and Tokuo Fukuichi selected project Sense-Wear as the winner, the work of Emanuela Corti and Ivan Parati with mentorship from Robin Hunicke.
Here is a selection of the three finalists and Grand Prix Winner:
LUZ by Marina Mellado Mendieta with Mentor Max Lam
Finalist LUZ addresses the need for daylight regardless of location. Designed in Northern Europe, the design of LUZ takes into account current weather conditions and temperature to adapt to its surroundings and provide light to the user.
Diomedeidae by Adriano Alfaro, Daiki Nakamori and Gaetano Mirko Vatiero with Mentor Arthur Huang
Finalist Project Diomedeidae is a lighting installation that uses its own kinetic movement to generate electricity to power itself. With the linkage that humans make between movement and life, the subtle 'flapping' motion of Diomedeidae taps into a deep rooted understanding of energy transference artificially and biologically.
Animal Masks by Keita Ebidzuka with Mentors Lyndon Neri & Rossana Hu
Finalist Project Animal Masks allows users to visualize the world as an animal would by taking out the visual distractions of modern society. The project addresses global mythologies about symbolic representations of animals and blends modern technology with symbolism.
Sense-Wear Emanuela Corti and Ivan Parati with Mentor Robin Hunicke
The Grand Prix Winner Sense-Wear is a fashion line to morph the wearer's understanding of the senses. Garments and accessories heighten physical sensations or mute them lending greater awareness to the user.
Teshia Treuhaft is a Michigan-born designer. Upon graduating from back-to-back degrees, a BFA from the University of Michigan and MFA of Furniture Design from RISD, she moved to Berlin to pursue a research project considering shifting paradigms in design education. Teshia currently works at the tangible UX startup Senic.