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20 September 2011

EESC "Design Eleven: Ageless Design" – THE WINNERS Award ceremony and exhibition

The EESC Design Eleven exhibition opens on 21 September 2011. Showcasing the winning designs and a shortlist of 20 design prototypes chosen from over 100 entries, the opening night will be attended by the winning designer and design teams from Belgium, Italy and Estonia.

You are kindly invited to attend the award ceremony and the exhibition's opening night, which will showcase the top 20 prototypes as well as the winning designs. The exhibition opens at the EESC in Brussels, 99 rue Belliard, on 21 September, as part of the official Design September programme (

Ms Anna Maria Darmanin, EESC vice-president, will award prizes to the three winning designers and teams at the opening night:

1st prize – Vincent Gerkens,

2nd prize – Francesco di Luzio, Giulia Bartolucci and Sonia Fornea,

3rd prize – Mari Korgesaar and Liina Tiidor.

As part of the competition, design students and designers from across the EU's 27 Member States were asked to focus on the following key issue: Intergenerational solidarity in times of an ageing population. The aim was to create an innovative “ageless design”, using a process of participative design, where final users take part in the design process, and/or through the process of co-design, involving the creation of a cross-generational design team, made up of both young and older designers.

The winning projects. KEEP Cool is an alternative fridge made using environmentally friendly and recyclable materials. It is not dependent on technology which will become obsolete in a few years' time. The terracotta pot is an innovative redesign of a cooling system that can be used by all generations. It is ageless in terms of both its materials and its design. The project was awarded the first prize of EUR 7 000. Vincent Gerkens was born in Brussels and now works in Liège, Belgium.

The second prize of EUR 4 000 went to the ORTOgether design project created by Francesco di Luzio, Giulia Bartolucci and Sonia Fornea from Rome, Italy. Inspired by our rich traditions of cultivating the land and the growing demand for a healthier lifestyle, this product helps bring together all generations. The project provides all the tools needed to create your own family vegetable garden in a fun and eco-friendly way.

The third prize of EUR 2 000 was awarded to the Darning Pear project by Mari Korgesaar and Liina Tiidor from Estonia. A wooden tool for mending clothes, the project promotes the idea of living economically, and helps to remind young people today of old traditions and the importance of re-using objects.

EESC Design Eleven Award.

The design award, launched by the European Economic and Social Committee in 2009, aims to enhance global awareness about social and civil society issues. The winning design will be produced in a limited edition and distributed as part of the EESC’s communications strategy during 2012, the European Year of Active Ageing and Intergenerational Solidarity.

The European Commission Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry, CUMULUS (International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media) and EIDD (Design for All Europe) have all joined forces to increase the communications impact and to strengthen the European institutions' and organisations' involvement in sustainable design practices and innovation.

Selection panel:

President of the Jury - Anna Maria Darmanin, EESC Vice-President

EESC Members 

Anne-Marie Sigmund - Head of Cultural sub-committee

Alexander Graf von Schwerin - Member of Cultural sub-committee

Maria Zvolska - Member of the Communications group

External Experts

François Jégou (FR/BE) – Strategic Design Scenarios (SDS), Director

Virginio Briatore (IT) – Design philosopher, journalist and international design talent scout

Prof. Dr. Helmut Langer (DE) – specialist in cultural, environmental, institutional and social communication projects with a global reach

Jesús Hernández Galan (SP) – Vice President of ENAT; Director of Accessibility, Fundación ONCE, Spain

Dr. Hegyesiné Éva Orsós (HU) – President of „Életet az Éveknek“ (National Association of Pensioners’ Clubs and of Older People); former Deputy State Secretary in the Ministry of Health, Social and Family Affairs


European Commission – DG Enterprise and Industry – Lucrezia Titi

CUMULUS – Christian Guellerin, General Director, President

EIDD – Design for All Europe– Finn Petrén, President

Award Coordination and Pre-Screening

Sylvia Binger (EESC), Bernhard  Knoblach (EESC), Giovanna Massoni (independent curator and EESC design consultant).

Information about the winners, including pictures and project descriptions, is available at:

EESC "Design Eleven" award ceremony and exhibition

European Economic and Social Committee exhibition (EESC)

99 rue Belliard, Foyer 6

1040 Brussels

22 September - 21 October 2011

Monday to Thursday - 9.00 am - 5.30 pm, Friday - 08.30 am - 3.30 pm

Award ceremony and Opening: 21 September, 6.30 pm (for the press and by invitation only)

For more information please contact:

Sylvia Binger Giovanna Massoni

Communication | Culture EESC Design consultant

European Economic and Social Committee Mobile: +32 (0) 476 349 594

Tel.: +32 (0) 2 546 8305

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