The winners of the inaugural identity Design Awards were announced during a virtual ceremony on 4 November 2020, with 14 projects honoured across 17 categories.
The winners were selected by an esteemed panel of international judges, including Italian architect Marco Piva, Paris-based designer India Mahdavi, Gianluca Peluffo, founder of Italian practice Peluffo & Partners, architect Sanjay Puri, founder and principal at Sanjay Puri Architects and Corina Leung, design director at LWK + Partners in Singapore.
This year, the identity Design Awards was divided into Interior Design and Architecture sections to provide a more comprehensive view of design and the built environment across the Middle East, and also included the annual Outdoor Design, Project of the Future and Editor’s Choice categories.
The People’s Choice Award was open to a public vote, and for the first time included the full awards shortlist, instead of the winning projects.
This year also saw the debut of the Design of the Year award for both Interior Design and Architecture, selected by the jury from the overall winners.
The identity Design Awards 2020 was the most diverse to date, with the highest regional participation in the event’s history. Shortlisted and winning projects hail from across the Middle East, including the UAE, Bahrain, Lebanon, Kuwait and Egypt. These projects have been completed both by large, international firms’ regional offices as well as by homegrown boutique firms.
This year’s winners include: Ammar Basheir, Carl Gerges Architects, CEBRA Architecture, Croquis Design Studio, DMJ Team, Godwin Austen Johnson, KEO International Consultants, L.S. Design, Lulie Fisher Design Studio, LW Design, Nakkash Design Studio, Studio M, Styled Habitat and T.Zed Architects.
From the jury
identity Design Awards’ international jury hails from across the globe: Paris, Milan, Genoa, Singapore and Mumbai. Here, the jury members share their thoughts on this year’s submissions.
“We saw some really interesting designs across all the categories. The projects displayed a beautiful integration of landscape, form, colour and texture, with excellent attention to detailing. For me, the category that had the most competitive designs was the Interior Design - Restaurant category, which was very interesting to study. Overall, there were some very interesting projects across all scales.”
“It was really exciting to see all these very interesting projects. Usually in these competitions we see a lot of international style but what I found here was anchoring - anchoring to the place and to society - and it is for this reason that I found in every proposal an attempt to belong. Architecture is the creation of the space of happiness, and what I found in your architecture is happiness.”
“As member of the jury it has been hugely stimulating reviewing the submitted works. Each reviewed proposal had many merits. They were original, clean and precise, and went far beyond simply meeting the client brief. The projects provided fresh ideas with a high quality standard. It was a real challenge to decide on the finalists, and even more difficult to decide the winners!”
“The shortlisted entrants have demonstrated designs with creativity, innovation and complexity. It was pleasing to the eye to go through the images and I was impressed by the quality of the design work put forth by these talented architects and designers.”
“It was interesting and enriching to see what’s happening in other parts of the world. I was really happy to see that some renovations of old buildings are being undertaken.”
Carl Gerges Architects Lebanon
Villa Chams is a remote retreat, designed to emit feelings of harmonious tranquility through nature’s many sensorial layers. The walls are naturally finished with poured earth concrete, while the sliding floor-to-ceiling windows blur the line between indoors and outdoors. Villa Chams embraces its surrounding’s identity, from the flora to the Roman temples, presenting itself as a melodically elemental storyteller. Its horizontal structure respectfully blends with its surroundings.
3D-printed home by U+A
Amer and Lamya’s Villa by Binchy and Binchy Architecture
BG Villa by studio bruno guelaff
House in Mishref by Studio Toggle
KOA Canvas by T.Zed Architects
Jumeirah Villa by LW Design
The Arcadia School’s Secondary Campus
Godwin Austen Johnson UAE
Drawing inspiration from The Arcadia School’s Primary Campus, the reception is bright and airy, opening out into a large, casual seating zone with a 12 metre-high indoor climbing wall. The inclusion of the of the wall reinforces the school's ethos of transparency and its desire to ensure that students play a highly visible and interactive role in their education. The design concept focuses on creating open spaces and a flexible working environment to foster social interaction.
Dubai Hills Estate by RSP
Innovation Hub by RMJM
Spinneys HQ Meydan by LOCI Architecture + Design
CEBRA Architecture UAE
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DESIGN FOCUS: OUTDOOR FURNITURE
DESIGN FOCUS: OUTDOOR FURNITURE
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