Wallpaper* Design Awards 2016: And the winners aren’t...
Our annual Design Awards issue celebrates the people, places and things that have rocked our world over the last year – but there are also things we’d rather forget. Here is our run-down of the year’s designs we just can’t love...
1. Kohn Pederson Fox’s Petersen Automotive Museum, LA
LA’s Petersen Automotive Museum opened in 1994 in a retired downtown department store, built in 1962. Given that the building was never designed as a museum, it was eventually decided that architects KPF give it a complete overhaul. It is now covered with 308 giant metal ribbons, curved to suggest air travelling over a car in a wind tunnel, swirling around a hot rod-red box. It is, indeed, a car crash of a building.
As originally featured in the February 2016 issue of Wallpaper* (W*203)
2. OnHub Makers
Do you think that your internet router is ugly? Can you even remember what your internet router looks like? In a classic case of a solution in search of a problem, Google has hooked up with tech-manufacturers Asus and TP-Link to create OnHub. Which in turn collaborated with a number of artists, designers and makers to create whacky, characterful covers for your router, one of which is furry. In fact this entire entry was engineered just so we could use the phrase ’furry router’
3. Bacon-Scented Underwear
Bacon-scented underwear was the idea of Justin and Dave, ’just two regular guys who won money on America’s Funniest Home Videos’. (Lord knows how, the video is not very funny.) J&D decided to use their winnings to fulfill their dream; ‘to make everything taste like bacon’. Soon they were dreaming bigger and wanted to make everything smell like bacon too. Including pants. We are not making this up. We so wish we were
4. Crazy Toilet Café
Just when you think that, in design terms, a kind of bland good taste, at the very least, has become standard; that the design wars have been won, something like this comes along. And, as so often, in Russia. Moscow’s Crazy Toilet Café is exactly what it says it is; absolute toilet
5. The Altwork Station
We’re all for re-thinking the Taylorist workstation, for putting a stop to the back-bending slouch and the slow crush of internal organs. But is a cumbersome multi-position (including flat-out, First Class red-eye style), multi-screen bit of heavy engineering that looks like a rejected prop for the Star Trek reboot really the answer?
6. ‘St Vladimir’ speaker
Back to Russia, at least for inspiration, and the ‘St Vladimir’ speaker – an acoustically equipped bust of Vladimir Putin. Which would be disturbing enough without the head-banging Russian president’s horrible mutilation. And yes, we understand that the speaker’s creator, artist Petro Wodkins, is in on the joke. But ironic intent is never an acceptable excuse