The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum threw its 10th annual gala last week at Cipriani 42nd Street in Manhattan, honoring winners and finalists across 12 disciplines (including the new Interaction Design category). The star-studded event capped off a year-long series of events, including a luncheon at the White House for the winners, free programs in Washington D.C. and New York, and a new exhibition celebrating 10 years of NDA winners, "Design USA," which opened at the Cooper-Hewitt last weekend.
Design Swank at a Former Bank
The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum threw its 10th annual gala last week at Cipriani 42nd Street (a former bank) in Manhattan, honoring winners and finalists across 12 disciplines, including the new Interaction Design category. The star-studded event capped off a year-long series of events, including a luncheon at the White House for the winners, free programs in Washington D.C. and New York, and a new exhibition celebrating 10 years of NDA winners, "Design USA," which opened at the Cooper-Hewitt last weekend. Designer David Stark created chandeliers and other elements with the names of every winner from the last ten years.
Emcee Paula Zahn and the White House's Desiree Rogers
CNN anchor and emcee for the evening Paula Zahn posed with White House social secretary Desiree Rogers, who represented on behalf of First Lady Michelle Obama. "You have a friend in the White House," she told the designers in attendance, to wild applause.
Design Mind: Amory Lovins
Physicist Amory B. Lovins is among the world’s leading authorities on energy. As the founder of the Rocky Mountain Institute, he has developed sustainability solutions for clients such as The Clinton Foundation, Deutsche Bank, MGM Mirage, and Wal-Mart.
Design Patron: Reynold Levy, Lincoln Center
The Design Patron award was given to Lincoln Center president Reynold Levy for his dedication to preserving and promoting the site as a world-class cultural destination, most recently with the renovation of Alice Tully Hall in conjunction with architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro.
Corporate and Institutional Achievement: Walker Art Center
The Minneapolis-based museum was acknowledged for its ongoing commitment to design, including extensive exhibitions and educational programs as well as its own incredible in-house design team. Finalists were Dwell Magazine and Heath Ceramics.
Fashion Design: Francisco Costa
Calvin Klein creative director Francisco Costa was honored for his crisp, contemporary takes on the fashion house's casual classics. Model and actress Eva Mendes (pictured), wearing Costa's work, presented the award (and had an inordinately difficult time reading the teleprompter). Finalists: Thom Browne and Rodarte.
Architecture Design: SHoP Architects
SHoP, which consists of two married couples, was honored for its contributions to contemporary architecture as well as to the city of New York, including this proposal for the South Street Seaport in Manhattan. Finalists were Architecture Research Office and Michael Maltzan Architecture.
Communication Design: The New York Times Graphics Department
The clear, concise infographics produced by The New York Times Graphics Department were honored for conveying information like these graphics for the 2008 Olympics. "People don't understand what I do," said one designer during a video clip. "Then I tell them I make the pie charts." Finalists: Hoefler & Frere-Jones and Project Projects.
Interior Design: TsAO & McKOWN Architects
The designers at TsAO & McKOWN Architects have contributed to minimal yet stimulating interiors for many residences and hotels, including those of hotelier Andre Balazs (pictured at left with Calvin Tsao). Finalists: Ali Tayar/Parallel Design Finalist and WORKac.
Interaction Design: Perceptive Pixel, Inc.
Jeff Han's company Perceptive Pixel was awarded for its revolutionary touchscreen technology, being used here by CNN's John King, who presented the award to Han. When students came to visit the studio, said King, they were so fascinated by the screens that he thought they should be used for educational purposes. Finalists: Lisa Strausfeld and Potion.
Landscape Design: Hood Design
Walter Hood was honored for his landscape architecture that graces institutions like the de Young Museum in San Francisco as well as lower-income neighborhoods like Splash Pad Park (pictured) in Oakland. Finalists: Andrea Cochran Landscape Architecture Finalist and Rios Clementi Hale Studios.
Product Design: Boym Partners
The husband and wife team have brought their brand of visual wit to furniture, industrial design and products for companies like Gaia & Gino and Moss, like these wooden dolls called Babel Blocks. Finalists: Salvor Projects and Smart Design.
Award Presenter (and Design Collector) John Waters
The filmmaker, writer and director brought down the house when he presented the Boyms with their award. He specifically cited their Buildings of Destruction--small models of buildings like the Waco Compound and the Unabomber's Cabin--as very inspirational to his work.
People's Design Award: Trek Lime
In the third annual People's Design Award, nominated by and voted on by thousands of design fans through the Cooper-Hewitt Web site, the Trek Lime, an automatically-shifting bicycle for commuters targeted towards people who currently don't own a bike.
Lifetime Achievement: Bill Moggridge
The founder of IDEO and creator of the term "interaction design" was honored for a lifetime of bridging the industrial and interactive design fields, including designing the Compass computer for GRiD Systems in 1982, widely considered to be the first laptop computer. "Thank you for your encomium," he said humbly.