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Hella Jongerius Receives BNO Piet Zwart Award 2021

By 15-10-2021

Unanimously, the jury has declared designer Hella Jongerius the winner of the BNO Piet Zwart Award 2021. This is because of her exceptional track record and her significance for current and future generations of designers.

The jury of the BNO Piet Zwart Award greatly admires the way in which Hella Jongerius (1963) researches, experiments, pushes back frontiers and continues to pioneer. She self-willedly follows both cultural and commercial paths, or paves them where necessary. She has also reinvented her own practice a number of times: starting out as an individually operating designer, she then set up a design agency, before opting for an internationally distributed network of designers working under her direction.

Hella Jongerius works(ed) for international brands such as Ikea, Vitra, KLM, Danskina, Maharam and Artek. After studying at the Design Academy Eindhoven (then AIVE), she stood out with her designs in unusual materials, such as the Soft Urn and a soft flexible washbasin. In 1993 she founded her own studio Jongeriuslab. In 2009 she moved her design studio to Berlin, where she still lives and works.

Her influence on following generations of designers is great: with regard to what they make, how they research and how they organise their practice.

About the BNO Piet Zwart Award
The BNO Piet Zwart Prize is an honorable award for a designer who is of great significance to the profession and an example for new generations of designers. All recognized design disciplines that are important for the prestige and development of the design profession are eligible. The BNO Piet Zwart Prize is awarded once every two years. Although the announcement is now, during Dutch Design Week where the exhibition with all other Dutch Design Awards is also on display, the prize will actually not be awarded until the spring of 2022, during a content event dedicated to Hella Jongerius.

Between 1983 and 2019, the prize has been awarded successively to: Friso Kramer, Jan van Toorn, Wim Crouwel, Eva Besnyö, Nel Verschuuren, Jan Bons, Bruno Ninaber van Eyben, Gert Dumbar, Willem Diepraam, Marijke van der Wijst, Gerard Unger, Ulf Moritz, Paul Mijksenaar, design studio LUST and Frans Bevers.

The jury for the BNO Piet Zwart Prize 2021 consists of Timo de Rijk (jury chairman), Pieke Bergmans, Gert Franke, Joost Grootens, Ed van Hinte and Shahar Livne. Madeleine van Lennep (director BNO) is secretary.

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Photos: Laura Fiorio