design

Fenty Beauty, SpaceX Falcon and Sony Aibo shortlisted for Beazley Designs of the Year

Published 12th September 2018
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Fenty Beauty, SpaceX Falcon and Sony Aibo shortlisted for Beazley Designs of the Year
Written by Jacopo Prisco, CNN
Rihanna's inclusive make-up line "Fenty Beauty," a bio-leather made from yeast, Sony's Aibo robotic dog and the world's first plastic-free shopping aisle are among the nominees for the Beazley Designs of the Year 2018, an annual award and exhibition run by London's Design Museum.
Also shortlisted for the award, now in its eleventh year, are the new Louvre museum in Abu Dhabi, Nike's Nigerian football team collection, a video game that trains players to spot fake news, Palomo's gender-bending men's fashion line and the SpaceX Falcon rocket, showcasing a wide variety of entries across the six categories (products, transport, graphics, fashion, digital and architecture).
Rihanna arrives at an event in New York to celebrate the launch of her beauty brand Fenty in September 2017.
Rihanna arrives at an event in New York to celebrate the launch of her beauty brand Fenty in September 2017. Credit: BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
"One of the things I like about design is the fact that it's all-encompassing and there's so many ways of defining it. Its parameters are always expanding," said Aric Chen, the guest curator who shortlisted this year's 87 entries out of hundreds pitched by a group of nominators.
Among several objects that are "really just beautifully crafted and wonderful to use," as Chen puts it, there's no shortage of socially engaged projects, like the Trash Isles campaign to turn ocean plastic into a country so that it can't be ignored or the Digua Community in Beijing, which turns former bomb shelters into spaces for social gatherings.
"There is a very pervasive thread that goes throughout the show, which is how designers are embracing the uncertainties that the world is currently confronting," said Chen.
Last year, architect David Adjaye emerged as the winner for his National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC, out of a politically charged shortlist. In 2016, the award went to an emergency refugee shelter designed by Ikea. This edition's overall winner, along with a winner for each category, will be announced on Nov. 18, 2018.
"We used to always talk about design as problem solving or forging emotional connections or some other clear cut definition," said Chen.
"At a time when the world itself is less clear cut, designers are also adapting to that in a very powerful way: addressing uncertainty by either resisting it or embracing it, and always finding positive opportunities and possibilities."
Browse the gallery above to see Aric Chen's exclusive picks for CNN Style from the 87 nominees.
Beazley Designs of the Year is on display at London's Design Museum from Sept. 12, 2018 to Jan. 6, 2019.