Welcome to our annual Design Awards issue, where we celebrate the people, places and pieces that have rocked our world over the last year. Loyal readers already know how the awards work, but here's the lowdown for the newcomers among you. The first half of the magazine is what could be called the 'Wallpaper* loves...' list, a hotly contested honour roll born of a year's worth of research, debates and narrowly averted altercations between our editors, writers, photographers, and stylists. We tackle the substantial, scouring the globe for the finest new architecture, transport, technology and sustainable design solutions. But there's also space to salute smaller marvels, the best in posh picnics, powder rooms and ping-pong tables.
The second half of the issue is given over to our Judges' Awards. Focusing on 11 major categories, Team Wallpaper* draws up the shortlists, then leaves the final decisions to our international supreme court. Once again we welcomed six creative high-achievers, each of them all but peerless in their field. These are the art world's architect of choice, David Adjaye; jewellery design's superstar surrealist, Delfina Delettrez; legendary art director, ad man and original Mad Man, George Lois; Academy Award-winning actor Eddie Redmayne; and our 2015 Designers of the Year, Patricia Urquiola and Konstantin Grcic.
I'd like to thank all our judges for their time, wisdom and dedication. However, an extra dollop of thanks goes to Patricia and Konstantin (or PatKon as they are now known at Wallpaper* HQ) for agreeing, at very short notice, to work together and create this month's subscriber cover. Given their great mutual respect, we thought it would be a smart idea to put them together for a portrait and an impromptu brain-storming/sketching session. But being the most in-demand and busiest of designers, the 'putting them together' bit was not so easy. After numerous diary-wrangling attempts to find them in the same country, a window of opportunity arose in December, when they would both be in Milan. And where better to shoot them, interview them, tie them down and set them to work than the Fondazione Prada, winner of the Best New Public Building award. There was just one drawback. Konstantin was actually on holiday with his other half to celebrate her birthday! Surely he wouldn't be able to do it? But he did.
So thank you PatKon for making this year's Design Awards issue so memorable, and thank you Mrs G for so graciously allowing us to borrow Konstantin on such a special day.
As originally featured in the February 2016 issue of Wallpaper* (W*203)