Along with a stunning and well-attended exhibition, the 12th edition of the Rotterdam Design Prize was accompanied by an extensive programme of student and public events.Eighty design students from the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague, the Utrecht School of the Arts and the Design Academy Eindhoven took part in a student essay contest. They were asked to reflect critically on the nominated works in 500 words or less. As part of the exercise, they were asked to serve as hosts and assist visitors to the exhibition in casting votes for the winner of the Public Prize. The jury – consisting of the design critics Max Bruinsma and Cassandra Pizzey and artistic director Joanna van der Zanden – decided the best-written, most well-argued and most convincing essay out of the 12 finalists was “Beyond Wittiness”, by Heini Lehtinen, a student in social design at the Design Academy Eindhoven. The essay is available at design.nl.

31 January

Jury debate and awards ceremony for the 2013 Rotterdam Design Prize and Public Prize

This year’s jurors are Edwin Heathcote, an architecture and design critic for the UK’s Financial Times; Caroline Baumann, the director of the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York; and Virginia Tassinari, an assistant professor of social spaces at the MAD Faculty in Genk, and a member of the international DESIS network. Design critic Max Bruinsma chairs the jury.


3.30–4.30pm: Jury debate led by Lucas Verwey and announcement of the student essay contest winner (entry from 3pm)

5pm: Award ceremony, with the €5,000 Rotterdam Design Public Prize presented by Guus Beumer and the €15,000 Rotterdam Design Prize 2013 presented by Barbera Wolfensberger, CEO of advertising agency FHV BBDO and chair of the Dutch government’s Topsector Creatieve industrie.

21 December – 2 February

AVRO’s Kunstuur will focus on all the nominees for the Rotterdam Design Prize in a series of five programmes, starting at 17.00 p.m. on Saturday 21 December. For the latest information about broadcasting dates and later viewing go to: www.avro.nl/kunstuur

The Rotterdam Design Prize has an extensive public programme. Visitors are encouraged to explore the works of the nominees and vote as jury members. They will be helped in this task by students of design studies from various colleges in the Netherlands. Their votes will determine the winner of the Rotterdam Design Public Prize, sponsored by Het Nieuwe Instituut.

The Rotterdam Design Prize 2013 exhibition is part of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s ongoing ‘Design in Boijmans’ programme. It includes a permanent display of ‘The Design Collection’, the ‘Design Column’ series and a dynamic programme of exhibitions about design, fashion and architecture. Concurrent with the Rotterdam Design Prize is a major exhibition of works by Oskar Kokoschka.

22 November

An afternoon of talks on design criticism
14:00 – 16:00 hours
Free entrance, excl. museum ticket
Reservations: http://www.boijmans.nl/nl/7/kalender/calendaritem/1484/lezingenmiddag-de…

Programme (English spoken):
– Welcome and short introduction on the history of the Rotterdam designprijs by Joanna van der Zanden (artistic director Rotterdam designprijs and moderator).
– Lecture by Max Bruinsma (design critic and editor): How and what to critisize?
– Interview with Angelique Spaninks (artistic manager MU &STRP) on the importance of design criticism for the design practice.
– Column by Joost Overbeek (designer and designcolumnist).

15 December & 11 January
Guided tour and Q&A with Joanna van der Zanden, artistic director

14:00 – 15:00 hours
Free entrance, excl. museum ticket
Reservations: www.boijmans.nl