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Core77 Design Awards
Three projects that redefine usability from the design world's newest competition
by Karen Day
on 25 July 2011
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Starting with a reinvented trophy—designed as a mold for casting multiples to share with collaborators—the Core77 Design Awards is setting out to be a contest like no other. The competition presents some of the industry's most thoughtful concepts that often change the way we interact with the landscape around us. Below are three paradigm-shifting projects that enhance life by redefining space and usage.

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Alcove

Felix Chun Lam and Joe Kenworthy created the Alcove, both a lighting component and storage solution, as a response to the reality of today's fast-growing, consumerist society. Inspired by Terence Conran's notion that there are three different levels of storage (at-hand, nearby and deep), the team added "seasonal items" as a fourth category. Showcasing the value in untapped ceiling space, the unobtrusive and easily-accessibly unit holds essential off-season items until the weather changes.

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Tall Furniture

Winning the DIY-Hack-Mod category, Robert Turek's Tall Furniture reassesses the stage's role in live performances. Turek whittled the stage down to smaller, individualized platforms for each performer, in turn creating a more immersive experience for the audience by increasing visibility and mobility. Tall Furniture also allows for impromptu concerts by elevating performers even outside of traditional venues.

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Node Chair

In most schools, critical thinking sessions and collaborative assignments that more closely mock the professional setting increasingly replace droning lectures. The Node Chair—designed by IDEO and Steelcase—lends itself to team-based work and classroom reconfiguration with its space-saving desk-and-chair combo set on wheels. Focused on "mobility, storage and fit," the chair features a bucket-style swivel seat, a shelf underneath and an adjustable work space.

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