Prague International Design Festival


Designblok 2023 Awards: the international jury awarded the best works of the 25th edition

8. 10. 2023

Designblok awarded the winners of the twenty-fifth edition. Designblok awards in eight categories went to the creators who managed to appeal to an international jury of design professionals. The absolute winner and holder of the Grand Prix (Award for Outstanding Achievement) was the young company Cake Houses, debuting with a project of a house that is completely customizable to the owner. The AGC Glass Europe Sustainable Design Award, evaluated by a separate expert jury, went to Ineke Hans for her REX project – the first deposit chair. In addition, prizes were awarded for the best school presentation, furniture, home accessories, designer installation, and manufacturer. A new award was the People's Choice Award, which involved thousands of festival visitors through online voting. The winners were announced by the jury and organisers on Sunday 8 October 2023 at a gala dinner in the Rudolf Gallery at Prague Castle.

The aim of the Designblok Awards is to highlight the most outstanding projects from the hundreds of exhibitors across the festival in predefined categories. For the second time, the organizers entrusted the decision-making to an independent international jury, which took a tour of the festival to get to thoroughly know the exhibited works and their authors. The jury of the 25th Designblok Awards included Joseph Grima, architect, editor, curator, founder of Alcova and Space Caviar, creative director of The Design Academy Eindhoven, Birgitta Homburger, creative director, designer and strategist, Benedict Hobson, journalist and co-director of Dezeen, and Simone Post, multidisciplinary designer. The president of the jury responsible for the composition of the jury and the voting process was Ineke Hans, a Dutch designer and educator, who is also the main international guest of Designblok 2023. The exhibiting designers had a unique opportunity to personally present their works to top European experts and see how they stand up to international comparison. "As a jury at this year's Designblok, we were not only looking for beauty and amazement, we were mainly focused on innovation. We live in an age that doesn't ask for more new products, but for quality ideas. Ideas that can positively impact the environment and society or keep crafts and traditions alive. Design has the power to move the world forward," said Ineke Hans, the president of this year's Designblok Awards jury.

In the high-profile category of the best furniture, the jury awarded the mmcité brand, which exhibited a collection called Morse by the Belgian Studio Segers in an interactive and visually impressive installation in the Trade Fair Palace of the National Gallery Prague. It brings the famous Morse code into public space – short and long signals in the form of wooden seating designed for airport halls, railway stations, or even outdoors. The best home accessory award went to LLEV studio for the PSYCHEE vases and the new design of the INNATURA glass. The objects are formed using the technique of blowing glass into forms made from a local mixture of mycelium, a material that designers Eva and Marcel Mochal have been developing and processing for a long time. The best designer installation award went to the talented German designer Marie Radke, a finalist in last year's Designblok Diploma Selection. Dominant among the companies was the Moser brand with a bold display, designed by the company's creative director Jan Plecháč. It was the installation with a levitating cloud on which glass vases float that mesmerized not only experts but also visitors. With more than 2,000 votes, they confirmed Moser's victory in the People's Choice Award category. Among the school presentations, the Prague UMPRUM won with the interactive project UMPRUM.Wav, which offered a way to understand the structure of music and an unusual view of musical instruments. First presented during this year's Milan Design Week, the project is the result of a long-term collaboration between designers, leading Czech musicians and music theorists.

The Grand Prix (Award for Extraordinary Achievement) was awarded to the Cake Houses brand, which is led by Pavel Špringl, Matyáš Švejdík and Šimon Marek. In their work, the trio of architects decided to explore architecturally high-quality, easy to construct and at the same time versatile family housing of the 21st century. They presented a concept of a configurable house that can be individualized according to the specific needs of future inhabitants, combining the advantages of a standard house and the possibilities of modern technology. As the absolute winner of Designblok, the Cake Houses brand gets the opportunity to participate in the next edition of the festival for free. "Cake Houses appealed to us not only with the coherence of their ideas and quality of their presentation, but also with their potential for a society-wide impact. It is a project that can improve the lives of many people," said Ineke Hans, President of the Designblok 2023 Awards Jury.

The AGC Glass Europe Sustainable Design Award went to Dutch designer Ineke Hans for her unique design of the first REX deposit chair. Especially for this category, which was created in 2021 and through which the festival motivates designers to create sustainably, a separate jury of sustainable design professionals and publicists is formed every year. This year the jury included the Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Technology Vladimír Kočí, the founder and Executive Director of the Association of Social Responsibility Lucie Mádlová, the founder and Director of the Institute of Circular Economy Soňa Klepek Jonášová and others. The winner of the AGC Glass Europe Sustainable Design Award also receives free exhibition space at the next edition of the festival.

However, the 25th Designblok festival is not over – the Designblok Cosmos and Made by Fire exhibitions at Prague Castle can be seen until Sunday 15 October 2023 with a festival pass or by purchasing a separate ticket.


Best school presentation: UMPRUM – UMPRUM.wav 

Best furniture: mmcité - Morse collection (designers Studio Segers)

Best home accessories: LLEV – PSYCHEE vases, INNATURA glasses

Best designer installation: Marie Radke

Best installation by a manufacturer: Moser (by Jan Plecháč)

AGC Glass Europe Sustainable Design Award: Ineke Hans – REX

Grand Prix (Award for outstanding achievement): Cake Houses (Pavel Špringl, Matyáš Švejdík and Šimon Marek)

Public Award: Moser


Ineke Hans, jury president, designer and professor (Netherlands), Joseph Grima, architect, editor, curator, founder of Alcova and Space Caviar, creative director of the Design Academy Eindhoven (UK), Birgitta Homburger, creative director, designer and strategist (Germany), Benedict Hobson, journalist, co-director of Dezeen (UK), Simone Post, multidisciplinary designer (Netherlands)


Tereza Bíbová, deputy editor-in-chief of CZECHDESIGN, Soňa Klepek Jonášová, founder and director of the Institute of Circular Economy, Professor Vladimír Kočí, Head of the Institute of Sustainability and Product Ecology at the University of Science and Technology in Prague, Lucie Mádlová, Founder and Executive Director of the Social Responsibility Association, Huy Pham, Material Consultant and Designer, matériO

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