Launched in 2013, the Lexus Design Award is an international competition for emerging creators from around the world. The winner of the 2021 edition is Henry Glogau with the Portable Solar Distiller project. Henry is a young New Zealander designer, recently graduated from the Royal Danish Academy in Copenhagen. His project was selected among the six finalists that emerged from a total of 2,079 applications received from 66 countries around the world.
The project has been chosen because it best expresses the “Design for a Better Tomorrow” concept, based on the three key principles of the Lexus brand – Anticipate, Innovate and Engage. The solar distiller uses sunlight to produce drinking water from polluted or seawater. By merging the production of local resources with the architecture of the community, this low-tech solution also works as a shelter from the sun. During the award ceremony, judge Greg Lynn explained how the ability to produce working prototypes was important for all attendees. Nevertheless, Portable Solar Distiller highlighted the potential of a project that has become much more than a product or appliance, but a portable and implementable infrastructure.
The six finalists, selected in January of this year, during the mentoring phase were led by Joe Doucet, Sabine Marcelis, Mariam Kamara, and Sputniko!. Together with them, they worked on the production of prototypes of their design proposals. For more information about the project, visit LexusDesignAward.com. Here you can find the winner of the Lexus Design Award 2020.
If you are interested in similar works, another example of a product that responds to the “Design for a Better Tomorrow” concept is WaterLight, the light powered by seawater (or urine, in case of emergency).