Welcome to the Wallpaper* Design Awards! The awards are not only an honour roll of outstanding places, products and people, but also a testament to design’s ability to respond to evolving needs, lift our spirits, and serve the public good. These qualities become particularly evident when unprecedented circumstances compel us to rethink our priorities and adjust our ways of living. This issue celebrates inspiring feats of creative brilliance from the past 12 months, and reminds us that despite the challenges we’ve faced, there are many reasons to be grateful.

Among them are ambitious architectural projects that are revitalising the public realm, such as the Bourse de Commerce in Paris (our limited-edition cover star), where François Pinault wants to ‘share his passion for contemporary art with as broad an audience as possible’. We brought together Mr Pinault and the legendary Tadao Ando for a joint interview, where they introduce this art museum and architectural destination, and look back on their exceptional two-decade partnership.

Then there’s triumphs of the imagination, from Jaime Hayon’s playground for the Hyundai Museum of Kids’ Books & Art in Namyangju, South Korea, where fantastic beasts transform into slides and see-saws; to Satoshi Kondo’s S/S21 collection for Issey Miyake, 41 looks that can be folded, stacked, tied and rolled into a single shipping box; and a necklace by Claire Choisne for Boucheron with diamond-set wings that look poised to take flight.

Of course, no Wallpaper* Design Awards issue would be complete without our top prizes, the Judges’ Awards. Honourees include a pair of Designers of the Year who are advocating for design’s power to address climate and social instabilities, a Best New Public Building that provides a place for worship while bringing water back to a dried-up landscape; a Best New Grooming Product that offers an inclusive and sustainable solution to a need in the market; and a Life-Enhancer of the Year that leverages local materials and techniques to improve sanitation, all showing that design really is the way to a better world. 

Please join me in congratulating the worthy winners of this year’s Wallpaper* Design Awards. I hope you enjoy the issue!

Sarah Douglas, Editor-in-Chief

Specifications - Soft cover.