Winner of ROCKPANEL Product Design Award ‘Stone becomes Art’ is announced

Under the title ‘Stone becomes Art’, the winner of the first European-wide ROCKPANEL Product Design Award was announced at the official opening of the new production facility in Roermond, The Netherlands, on Thursday 10th October.

During the summer, ROCKPANEL, the facade panel manufacturer invited architects, planners, product designers, specialists in related disciplines and students, to design a new, unique and creative stone-look product to reflect the facades of the future. A total of 52 designs were submitted from a wide range of European countries.

The winner of the ROCKPANEL Product Design Award ‘Stone becomes Art’ was Roman Baudisch, an Architectural Technician from Hamburg, with his design ‘Volcano’. As well as prize money of €5,000, the winning design will be included in the ROCKPANEL stone range, to be launched for 2015. The ‘Volcano’ design is now being further developed in close collaboration with the winner until it is ready for production. The design awarded second place, with prize money of € 2,000, was created by Marit Angenita Otto, a Dutch artist from Zwolle. Third prize was won by the Collective A from Münster, Germany, represented by B.A. Arch Ronny Zschörper and Franziska Adler.

The Product Design Award ceremony took place during the official opening of the new ROCKPANEL production facility in Roermond, the Netherlands, to which all the finalists were invited.

The Judging Process
In September 2013, a panel of international and interdisciplinary experts from the fields of design, architecture and materials research considered and evaluated all the designs submitted. The panel members were Heike Klussmann, Professor of Graphic Art and Architecture at the University of Kassel, Germany; Enrica Mosciaro, Architect at Fusina6, with offices in Verona and Barcelona; Luc Nooijen, Architect at Architecten Aan de Maas in Maastricht, the Netherlands; and John Relou, Business Development Manager of ROCKPANEL. The key criteria for assessing the designs were feasibility, aesthetics, the uniqueness, versatility and creativity of the design and its popularity within the ROCKPANEL social media community.

The final decision; the ’Volcano‘ design wins
Ultimately, the judges came to a unanimous decision. Heike Klussmann says:

“The ‘Volcano‘ design is convincing thanks to its clear consistent reinterpretation of volcanic rock in the façade board design . An imaginary cut through the stone provides the inspiration and the starting point for the design and at the same time makes a playful reference to basalt, the base material for all ROCKPANEL board material. The airlocks in the stone made visible by the cut create a rhythmic, structured surface and open up a rich variation of approaches to style. The deliberate combination of outline and surface, of intermediate space and frame, of positive and negative, underlines the contrasts between three dimensional and surface effects in design. This is why the panel recommended that the implementation of the ‘Volcano‘ design should be taken forward.”

The designs awarded 2nd and 3rd places.

2nd place “Puzzled” by Marit Angenita Otto
Although an important detail in the design entitled “Puzzled” cannot be created in the production process, the judges came to the conclusion that this was an extraordinary work. The stone structure was created artificially by the use of other materials and the way in which they were processed. In combination with colour, this design opens up a great many possibilities. The precise development of the design demonstrates in all its simplicity that “Puzzled” is a complex design which merits second place.

3rd place “Golden Age” by Franziska Adler and Ronny Zschörper
This design reflects the extraordinary complexity of stone. Fossils preserve the memory of pre-historic times. The proposal submitted fulfil all the requirements of the competition: a design that does not imitate stone, but that develops it further, with creativity. Making reference to this concept and with the golden shades further enhanced by incidental sun rays, the judges selected this design for the third prize.