6 February 2010

Back to the future - again


The Electrolux Design Lab 2010 competition, open to undergraduate and graduate industrial design students, has issued a call for entries.

Since its launch in 2003, the Electrolux Design Lab has become one of the most important platforms for new designers. As a showcase of the emerging new and exciting design talent it is without equal. And it provides a unique opportunity to get an early glimpse of what the industrial designers of tomorrow have in store for us.

The young men and women who enter the competition are not restricted by what has gone before in KBB-Land. I suspect that few of them had considered household appliance design prior to entering a competition run by one of the 'big beasts' of this market, so they inevitably bring new ideas to the table - make that the drawing board.Back to the future - again.

Okay, most of the design ideas will remain just that, ideas. But all of the entries are exciting and original, and several will sow the seeds of the domestic appliances of tomorrow.

This year the Design Lab theme is household appliances for 2050 when it is predicted that almost three-quarters of the population will be living in an urban environment.

Homes will be smaller, so the days of the 600mm X 600mm domestic appliance cube is already numbered. That has already started of course, so it will be interesting to see how much further down this road we may be in another 40 years.

Meanwhile if you want to get an idea of what future generations may be using in 90 years time, the kbb Birmingham exhibition will feature the finalists' entries from Design Lab 2008.

You may think all of the ideas really are "off the wall". But before to use your mobile phone to call a friend to tell them how ridiculous the ideas are, think how much the phone you are holding has changed in the last 90 years since it came "off the wall".

There is a dedicated Design Lab 2010 website at: www.electroluxdesignlab.com

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