I.D.’s only mandate for student design review submissions is that projects must be the result of assigned academic work, but this year’s jurors added a few caveats of their own. Entries, they said, would be judged for “thoroughness, content, and execution” (note to future students: neatness counts), and they should “answer a social need” (even though many of the finalists didn’t). A sense of humor didn’t hurt, but the jurors expressed fatigue with the “flat irony” that sometimes accompanies critical design. They chose instead to reward projects that yielded small delights, like a strange yet captivating video that offers a sadistic take on a traditional Korean children’s song, and emotionally evocative objects, like an automated calendar that slowly feeds into a paper shredder, leaving each day in tatters on the ground. “In an alienated world, this kind of mark-making seems more and more necessary,” juror Allan Chochinov said. “Leaving traces, leaving evidence… These are literally signs of our times.”
MODERATOR / Sarah Verdone is a freelance writer based in New York and a frequent contributor to I.D. Her work has appeared in T: The New York Times Style Magazine and Design Week. She has written about design and pop culture for Paper magazine for more than 15 years.
JUROR / Kip Kotzen is the sales and marketing director of Areaware, a New York–based design company. He began his career as a literary agent before following his passion for design to work first with the Eames Office and then managing the New York retail store for Vitra. JUROR / Allan Chochinov is a partner at Core77, a New York–based network serving a global community of designers. Chochinov is editor-in-chief of Core77.com, Coroflot.com, and Designdirectory.com, and he writes and lectures on the impact of design on contemporary culture. He teaches in the graduate design departments at Pratt Institute and the School of Visual Arts in New York City.
JUROR / Marina Zurkow creates psychological narratives—in the form of multi- channel videos, multi-screen computer pieces, cartoons, and interactive mobile works—about humans and their relationship to animals, plants, and the weather. She has exhibited at The Sundance Film Festival, Walker Art Center, and Eyebeam, among others. She teaches at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.