The theme is "NEW STORY": The award-winning works for the KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD 2017 have been chosen

-One Grand Prix winner and three Merit Award winners have been chosen!!-

Having reviewed a total of 1,326 works entered from Japan and overseas (880 domestic works and 446 international works), KOKUYO Co., Ltd* are pleased to announce that we chose five award-winning works on January 18 (Thursday) in our competition, KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD 2017 (entry period: June 15 to August 31, 2017), which aims to gather from a wide range of everyday users excellent product designs created from the user's viewpoint, and then commercialize them.
*Head office: Osaka City / President and CEO: Hidekuni Kuroda

The KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD commenced in 2002 with the goal of enhancing customer-driven manufacturing, and we are celebrating its 15th anniversary this year (the event was not held in 2010).
Recent themes, "Beautiful Lifestyle" (2015) and "HOW TO LIVE" (2016), encompassed not only the beauty of functionality and design; they also invited people to consider aspects like lifestyles and ways of living. In addition to these elements, this year we called for entries under the theme of "NEW STORY", in anticipation of receiving works that are fresh in this modern world that is overflowing with things, and which possess the power to establish new genres in "working" "learning" and "living" environments.

The works that won the Grand Prix and other awards this year are as follows.

The award-winning works

Grand Prix (1 work)

Design name Generic name Design overview Award winner/Group name
Eatool Snack Wake-up caffeine, break-time sugar. Snacks are important tools in speeding up progress at work. Write, erase, cut, paste: Each tool has its own role. Breakdown snacks into their elements, consider their shapes and locations, and office snacks start to play their roles as tools. nyokki (Daisuke Kakinoki / Haruka Mitani / Yuki Yawata)


Award for Excellence (three designs)

Design name Generic name Design overview Award winner/Group name
Time Sail Table Clock What is time? 'Time Sail' is something that makes people think about time and life. Thanks to science and technology, we always know the right time, and are punctual, but this gradually makes us stressed. The sailing ship shape of 'Time Sail' creates a relaxing feel, as the ship sails silently on the sea of time. The atmosphere created brings you natural and complete relaxation for the soul. It is designed to make you slow down, take a look at your daily life, and think again about the real meaning of time. T4-202 (Chih Chiang, LIU / Yung Hsun, CHEN)
Eraser Writer Eraser Turn a tool for 'erasing' into a tool for 'writing'. Eraser Writer looks like a pen-shaped colored eraser, but it is used quite differently from the usual eraser. Use it like a pen, and the rubber will be scraped off and stick to the surface. You can write with it on paper, or anywhere else, and it can be erased easily simply by rubbing it off with your finger. A new way of thinking has brought new value to the eraser. PURABANBAN (Nahoko Nakajima / Takayuki Kihira)
Magnet stationery Pencil,
mechanical pencil,
Stationery with magnetic power. This product presents the possibility of using stationery without a case, since the items use magnetism to stick to one another and become one object. This magnetic power gives us a new way to use stationery which is different from the conventional role it has had. Pens and pens, pens and people, people and stationery. All these relationships will change little by little. This product presents a chance to broaden our everyday conversations. It would be wonderful if this everyday stationery can add a touch of joy to our daily lives. Sohma Furutate
Time Sail
Time Sail
Eraser Writer
Eraser Writer
Magnet stationery
Magnet stationery

An exhibition of the award-winning works in the KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD 2017, including the above Grand Prix- and Merit Award-winning works, will be held in Tokyo and Osaka as shown below. At the Osaka exhibition, we will be welcoming judges Mr. Ryosuke Uehara and Ms. Yoshie Watanabe as guests to a talk show about the outstanding features of the award-winning works and on the theme, "NEW STORY". Also, items that have been commercialized out of past KOKUYO DESIGN AWARD works will be sold at both venues.

<Tokyo event>
Dates: February 2 (Fri.) to 4 (Sun.), 2018
Time: 11:00 to 20:00
Venue: MINA-TO, 1F Aoyama Spiral Bldg.

<Osaka event>
Dates: February 9 (Fri.) to 11 (Sun.), 2018
Time: 10:00 to 21:00 (until 20:00 on the last day)
Venue: Showroom area inside the Tsutaya Books Salon, 9F LUCUA Osaka
■Talk show
Guests: Mr. Ryosuke Uehara, Ms. Yoshie Watanabe
Time and Date: 19:00 to 20:30 on February 9 (Fri.), 2018
Venue: Showroom area inside the Tsutaya Books Salon, 9F LUCUA Osaka
Applications: Please apply from the URL below (Capacity: 40 persons)

Ryosuke Uehara
Director of KIGI Co., Ltd. Born in Hokkaido in 1972. Graduated from the Faculty of Art and Design (Textile Design), Tama Art University. Worked at DRAFT Co., Ltd. and established KIGI in 2012 with Yoshie Watanabe, his co-worker from 1999. Uehara's main work includes the art direction for PASS THE BATON and Theater Products, and brand direction and product development for D-BROS. He also seeks new perspectives for how artistic creation could be through his activities establishing the product brand KIKOF with craftsmen of traditional arts in Shiga Prefecture, and by holding exhibitions of the artworks created. Uehara and Watanabe run OUR FAVORITE SHOP, a gallery and own-brand store, in Shirogane, Tokyo. Uehara has won the Tokyo ADC Grand Prix, the 11th Yusaku Kamekura Design Award, the JAGDA Award, TDC Award, NYADC Gold Award, and the ONE SHOW DESIGN Gold Award to note but a few.

Yoshie Watanabe
Born in Yamaguchi Prefecture in 1961. Graduated from Yamaguchi University. Worked at DRAFT Co., Ltd. and established KIGI in 2012 with Ryosuke Uehara, her co-worker from 1999. She works as a graphic designer, and has been a director of D-BROS since its establishment. She created the fashion brand CACUMA in collaboration with Hobonichi, and also established the product brand KIKOF with craftsmen of traditional arts in Shiga Prefecture along with Uehara. She continues to produce artwork in between her design work, and holds exhibitions of her works. In 2015, she and Uehara opened OUR FAVORITE SHOP, a gallery and own-brand store, in Shirogane, Tokyo. Through Little More Books & Store, she has published picture books, "BROOCH", "UN DEUX", "Journey", "Only yours. Little Red Riding Hood, The Nutcracker, Alice in Wonderland", and the collections of works "KIGI", and "KIGI_M". She has won the Tokyo ADC Grand Prix, the 19th Yusaku Kamekura Design Award, the D&AD Gold Award, ONE SHOW DESIGN Gold Award, and NY ADC Gold Award to note but a few.
  • *The name of the work, general name, description of the work and the name of the winner or group name are the original text entered in the submission form.
  • The 2017 KOKUYO Design Award

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