The Audi Innovation Award is now in its third year and has consistently grown in status and popularity since its inception in 2016. The first of its kind in the Middle East, the Audi Innovation Award seeks to empower local designers and inspire the region with innovative creations that can improve the way we live. It is an annual competition open to anyone residing in the GCC and most Levant countries.
A professional jury from the region rewards the best-submitted projects based on degrees of innovation, ease of use, technique, feasibility, target user, development and relevance to the theme.
This year, designers are competing to win around the theme ‘Connections’, which is defined as ‘bringing things together’, or ‘how things relate to one another’. Its contemporary meaning reflects technology’s increasing ability to provide a means through which users and their products and service providers can identify preferences and behaviour.
The top three designs will be displayed in the Audi Innovation Hub at Design Week in Dubai Design District, which is another first for the brand with the Four Rings. This structure is designed by MEAN* (Middle East Architecture Network), founded by Riyad Joucka, who was also a previous jury member for the first Audi Innovation Award. The design is inspired by both the character of the Audi Brand and the concept of connectivity, which is the theme of this year’s Audi Innovation Award.
Commenting on the new Audi Innovation Hub, Riyad Joucka from MEAN* said “ The design symbolizes the spirit of innovation, as embraced by Audi as a pioneering car manufacturer; the structure utilizes cutting-edge design and fabrication technologies in juxtaposition with light, shadow and materiality, to generate a lively space of idea exchange and provocation.”
He continued “A line is the simplest geometry connecting two bodies. With that concept in mind, MEAN* envisaged a space where a curved structure sweeps in space, bridging the exterior with its interior. Connecting those elements are straight lines rotating in space through weaving, overlapping and linking, generating dynamic, organic spaces.”
Materiality is a significant departure point for the design of the structure. Contrasting the brightly lit lines is a black matte rubber material, sponsored by Bee’ah, creating the facade of the structure with tiles made by processing discarded tyres using an advanced cryogenic process. The structure will be a major activation during the event, hosting the annual ‘Audi Innovation Award’, panel discussions, talks, and presentations.
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The three shortlisted candidates for this year’s Audi Innovation Award were each awarded up to $2,500 towards the presentation of their concept model at Dubai Design Week and the prizes for the overall winner of the Audi Innovation Award include a trophy and a trip to the Audi factory in Ingolstadt, Germany to experience the automotive design journey at Audi headquarters. In addition to this, Audi Middle East awards $25,000 worth of consultancy to cover items such as IP registration, legal counselling and business development.
The winner of the third Audi Innovation award will be announced at 3 pm on Tuesday 13th November in the Audi Innovation Hub at Dubai Design District. Konrad Troeger, Audi Exterior Lighting Designer, has flown in from the Company headquarters in Germany, for the award ceremony and will give a talk at 6 pm on the process of lighting design at Audi
Commenting on his attendance at Design Week, Konrad Troeger said, “Lighting Design for cars as we know them, is the highly emotional process of shaping the most important details of the exterior sculpture full of character: the eyes of the car. At the same time, they are highly technical, digital objects with the best performance for the driver and surrounding people. It’s always a creative journey between these two worlds. And in the future, the light will be much more. It will be communicational, social and intelligent”.