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bf-Prize, Photo: Ricardo Martinez Roa
bf-Prize, Photo: Ricardo Martinez Roa

Whether in the few remaining specialised publications, in the daily press or in an academic context: design criticism has a hard time. The reasons for this are manifold. This makes it all the more important to promote the emergence of texts that do not approach general questions of design and specific products from the perspective of marketing or advertising, but rather view the broad field of design and its conditions from a critical distance. The Wilhelm Braun-Feldweg Prize for design-critical texts (bf-Prize for short) is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Young designers are invited to enter design-critical texts for the competition, which is being awarded for the ninth time (with a new look and new partners). Students on design degree programmes and their graduates from 2020 or later are eligible to take part. The topic can be chosen freely, as can the presentation, style and text form. “What we are looking for,” says the call for entries, “are well-founded, excitingly written, illuminating texts on the subject of design. This can be a new perspective, an unusual approach or a different evaluation or interpretation of current topics”. An expert jury decides on the prize. The winning text will be printed in an edition of 1000 copies and published in the “Designkritische Texte” series by Niggli Verlag. The winner and the book will be presented at an award ceremony at the Akademie der Künste Berlin in mid-November.

The bf prize is awarded by the newly established Wilhelm Braun-Feldweg Foundation. One of its primary aims is to award and secure the aforementioned prize for design-critical texts. Its partners are the Akademie der Künste Berlin and the Museum Angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt am Main. The written legacy of Prof. Dr Wilhelm Braun-Feldweg (1908 to 1998), product designer, university lecturer and founding professor of the Chair of Industrial Design at the SHfbK Berlin, is already in the collection of the Berlin Academy of Arts. The Museum Angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt am Main acquired the object estate from the Wilhelm Braun-Feldweg Foundation in 2023 with financial support from the Kulturstiftung der Länder.

The competition documents are available on the website.
Deadline for applications is 15 April 2024.

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