London | Winners of the Designs of the Year / the exhibition at the Design Museum

Better Shelter UNHCR IKEA 03

Better Shelter designed by Johan Karlsson, Dennis Kanter, Christian Gustafsson, John van Leer, Tim de Haas, Nicolò Barlera, the IKEA Foundation, and UNHCR has been named the Beazley Design of the Year.

cover-image: the Better Shelter, winner of the Beazley Designs of the Year

In its ninth year, the Beazley Design of the Year award was presented at an exclusive dinner held inside the central atrium at the Design Museum.

As part of the opening programme of the Design Museum’s new home on Kensington High Street, the exhibition “Beazley Designs of the Year” presents 70 nominations celebrating the best designs from around the world in the last 12 months across six categories: Architecture, Digital, Fashion, Graphics, Product and Transport.

The winner
Architecture | the Better Shelter
Selected as the winner of the Architecture category, the Better Shelter is a social enterprise bringing design industry innovation to emergency and temporary shelter.
The project has developed safer, more dignified homes for those who have been displaced due conflict and natural disasters. Featuring a lockable front door and a solar powered wall, the shelter utilises flat-pack technology used in furniture design and has 2 repurposed it to create a shelter that can be easily assembled and transported. Flat-packed in a two-box kit along with all the required tools, the shelter is easily assembled in about four hours. The photovoltaic panel provides enough energy to power the supplied light or to charge a mobile phone. 30,000 Better Shelters’ are already in use around the world and the judges chose Better Shelter as a clear demonstration of scalable design that has the ability to make a worldwide impact.

Better Shelter UNHCR IKEA 02

Better Shelter UNHCR IKEA 01


Images courtesy of UNHCR and

Other category winners

Digital | OpenSurgery
“OpenSurgery” was developed as a graduation project at the Design Interactions department of the Royal College of Art. The initial concept originated from the Healthcare Futures Workshop at the KYOTO Design Lab (D-Lab) at the Kyoto Institute for Technology.
Selected for demonstrating ‘a tipping point’ in our relationship with technology, the project was created in response to uninsured Americans posting videos on YouTube and performing minor operations and medical hacks on themselves and others.


Fashion | Children vs. Fashion
designers: A group aged 8 kids from CEIP La Rioja School, Madrid, Spain.
In the Fashion category it was a video exploring advertising that won the award. “Children vs Fashion” asked a group of eight year olds in Madrid to provide their thoughts on an element of fashion advertising the portrayed gender imbalance. Offering the uninhibited viewpoint of a child, the project exposes the negative impact of a selection of advertisements and how the focus is removed from the clothes that they are intended to promote.


Graphics | (pronounced Blackstar)
Designer: Jonathan Barnbrook at Barnbrook for David Bowie/Sony Entertainment Inc.
It was the iconic cover of David Bowie’s Blackstar album received the Beazley Graphic Design of the Year. Designed by Jonathan Barnbrook, the Unicode Blackstar symbol created a simplistic identity that let the music take centre stage but also created a design that’s easy-to-recognise and share. Designed using open source elements, the artwork for the album became open-sourced itself following Bowie’s death enabling fans to engage and interact with the symbols.




Product | Space Cup
Designers: Mark Weislogel: Innovator (IRPI LLC/Portland State University) Andrew Wollman: Designer (IRPI LLC) John Graf: Co-Investigator (NASA Johnson Space Center) Donald Pettit: NASA Astronaut Innovator (NASA Johnson Space Center) Ryan Jenson: Sponsor (IRPI LLC)
The Space Cup was designed and developed using scientific results of experiments conducted aboard the International Space Station. The cup is designed to exploit passive capillary forces to replace the role of gravity to create an earth-like drinking experience in the low-gravity environment of space. Sealed drink bags are normally sipped through a straw to avoid spilling in space. The Space Cup however uses surface tension, fluid wetting properties, and a unique shape to drive the liquid toward the astronaut’s mouth whilst drinking from an open cup.


Transport | Lumos 
Designers: Eu-wen Ding – Co-Founder & CEO, Jeff Haoran Chen – CoFounder & CTO
Lumos, the world’s first smart bicycle helmet with integrated light signals, completed the category winners by being named the Beazley Transport Design of the Year. With a built in accelerometer Lumos detects when you’re slowing down and automatically displays a brake light and turn signals. In August 2015, Lumos Helmet blew past its funding goal of $125,000 USD to raise over $800,000, making it the highest funded bicycle helmet campaign in crowdfunding history.



The six category winners along with the further 70 other nominations are on display at the Design Museum until 19 February.

Beazley Designs of the Year
[temporary exhibition]
24 November, 2016 / 19 February, 2017.
The Design Museum
224 – 238 Kensington High Street, London W8 6AG

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