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orange puff chairs against neutral background

Beam Lounge Collection by Nienkämper Photograph by Peter Luztyk

GRAY Media announces the product design, lighting / furniture finalists for the 7th Annual GRAY Awards.

SEATTLE, December 22, 2023 — Now in its 7th year, GRAY Awards — the international cross-disciplinary design awards program — continues to recognize the outstanding work happening around the world. Finalists have been selected in the fields of ARCHITECTURE, INTERIORS, LANDSCAPE, and PRODUCT DESIGN.

Designers and manufacturers were invited to submit their projects in nine judges categories plus an editors’ pick Design for Good category. An esteemed panel of international design luminaries will select a winner in each of the initial nine categories. The winning designers will receive print and digital recognition as well as a custom designed trophy by acclaimed glass artist John Hogan.

GRAY encourages designers and manufacturers to create "Design for Good" projects —projects that have made a positive impact through design on a humanitarian, community, or environmental issue — and offers an award dedicated to these works each year.

In 2020, when the GRAY Awards expanded from a regional to international program, GRAY added a Legacy Award dedicated exclusively to a Pacific Northwest-based designer's lifetime achievement, honoring the region where GRAY began and the home to the GRAY Awards Parties. GRAY will name the next Legacy at the Party.

Newly introduced at the 6th annual GRAY Awards last year, GRAY added several Breakout Categories, opening up opportunities to win GRAY Awards in micro-categories from Kitchens to Collaborations.

All winners will be announced at the GRAY Awards Party held in Seattle in March, 2024. The party is one of the most highly anticipated design bashes of the year, where all guests are treated like winners.

To purchase tickets, visit the 7th annual GRAY Awards Party page.


design judges black and white portraits

It is our privilege each year to welcome an international group of distinguished creatives to the GRAY Awards judging panel. Each working at the top of their game, these professionals now focus a discerning eye on determining the winners of the coveted GRAY Awards trophies.

7th annual GRAY Awards judging panel: Lee Broom, Brigitte Shim, Alessandro Munge, Silvia Tcherassi, Stephen Burks

orange puff chair with light wood

Beam Lounge Collection by Nienkämper

Photograph by Peter Luztyk

This project began when an in-house designer from the Nienkämper design department presented a project that he had been working on independently. Beam Lounge collection was just a concept rendering. A series of seating elements resting on a wooden beam. For the prototype, the seating elements were sculpted out of styrofoam to determine scale and pitch. Once this was achieved a mould was made to create a foam injected seat and back. Getting the softness and comfort was simply a matter of trial and error.

The beam itself is made from fsc certified wood core with veneer overlay. Technology can be integrated into the beam for power. Beam has a playful and amusing silhouette. Just as the name suggests, Beam’s fully upholstered rounded seating elements rest on an exposed wood beam through the center which adds warmth to the design by providing a rich play of materials and finishes. The design is relaxed, casual and open, but most of all fun. Available as a single lounge chair or two and three seater, with the option of adding table elements as well. The idea behind Beam is to create notable, dynamic, and playful arrangements.

cream colored soft seating

Big Sur Collection by Michael Hilal

Photograph Courtesy St. Vincents

The Big Sur Collection by Michael Hilal is “a love letter to California.” Designed in collaboration with the renowned St. Vincents gallery in Antwerp, Belgium, Hilal subverts the concept of formality in design and draws inspiration from the varied topography of his home state. From mountain peaks to the rugged shoreline, nature is the starting point for Big Sur’s shifting interplay of organic shapes. The collection includes two upholstered sofa configurations (including pillows), two stools, and a bar and shelf. Each piece uniquely upends expectations.

wood spoke chandelier with white globes against ornate ceiling

Del Playa Lighting by Jessica Helgerson Interior Design

Photograph by Aaron Leitz

The materials in the Del Playa lighting line are very much of a time and place - wood and ceramic - California in the 70’s. There’s a handcrafted feeling to them.

The fixtures play with the shape of a line thinning and then flaring back out. Designer Jessica Helgerson has long admired this shape in furniture legs, architectural components, and decorative objects, but hadn’t seen it in lighting. Each fixture is an assemblage of linear turned wood components. The initial idea began with a love for turning - turned wood, turned metal - and then what happens when you turn wood, what happens when you turn metal. Metal can get a lot thinner and still feel right carrying some weight, however, wood, with a ceramic piece attached to it, just can’t. So, the shapes came from the materials and the materials dictated the shapes.

white orb chandelier hanging over water with black stone wall

Photograph courtesy of Matthew McCormick Studio

A showcase of experimental play with material and form, Ova exudes an ethereal glow to turn any space into an elegant sanctuary. Carefully handmade with dimensional glass layers, it casts diffused and ambient warmth through its womb-like, translucent inner body, bringing an energetic incandescence to an instinctively familiar form. Akin to a living force found in nature, Ova’s luminescence brings a depth of movement that seemingly transforms from every vantage point. The warm dispersion of light between an opaque inner layer and a clear (or frosted) outer layer, its delicate spine and rounded curves flaunt an unabashed attention to detail.

colorful modular furniture in pinks and greens against neutral backdrop

Semiton by Arper

Photograph courtesy of Arper

Designed by Garcia Cumini, Semiton invites users to mix it up, pull it out, put it away, make some space, or set it on display. This modular collection is designed with the intention of being an endlessly customizable and adaptive piece that adds structure, surface, and storage to any space. Different shelving and storage modules along with a broad range of finishes provide almost infinite configurations that can be expanded with further modules in order to adapt to boundless needs and demands. Whether used as a surrounding structure or striking centerpiece, Semiton offers beautiful possibilities for all spaces, from office, to hospitality, and home.

The Semiton collection is a fully customizable and modular system composed of a powder-coated aluminum structure, able to accommodate two or three units, which can be occupied by storage modules or top modules.

7th Annual GRAY Awards finalists' announcements began December 18, 2023 and will continue to publish daily until all categories have been announced. For more information, visit our GRAY Awards Party page.


Thank you to our 7th annual GRAY Awards sponsors and industry partners:


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