• Lexus welcomes Sebastian Wrong of the British design brand Established & Sons as a new mentor for the Lexus Design Award 2019
  • Leading figures from the international design world Sir David Adjaye, Paola Antonelli and Lexus International President Yoshihiro Sawa return as award judges
  • Further mentors and an additional member of the judging panel will be announced in October

Sebastian Wrong, Co-founder and Design Director of the leading UK-based design brand Established & Sons has joined the distinguished roster of mentors for the Lexus Design Award 2019, bringing his expertise in creative skills, product design and manufacturing to the award programme.

Wrong is famous for iconic furniture designs, including the Heidi stool, with its mix of modernity and nostalgia, and the Wrongwood collection, praised by critics for its unexpected use of colour and designs reminiscent of woodblock prints. His work with the new generation of design talent and his collaboration with industry veterans make him an ideal choice as a member of the Lexus Design Award’s panel of mentors.

“Sebastian shares Lexus’s goal of addressing tomorrow’s challenges today and making the world a better place. Lexus proudly welcomes him to the design mentorship programme,” said Spiros Fotinos, Lexus International Global Head of Brand Management and Marketing.

Established in 2013, the Lexus Design Award is an international competition that seeks to nurture emerging designers who use creative design thinking to solve everyday problems and help build a better future for individuals and for society.

This year, six finalists will be selected from entries from around the world to turn their design concepts into a functioning prototype, supported with mentorship and a budget of up to three million yen (more than £20,000). These prototypes will be put on public display at Milan Design Week 2019, competing to win the Lexus Design Award Grand Prix. The judges will consider how the work integrates three fundamental principles of the Lexus brand: Anticipate, Innovate and Captivate.

In previous years, finalists have received tutelage at their mentor’s base, but for the 2019 award Lexus is bringing all the contenders to New York, one of the world’s design capitals, where they will be given guidance from all the mentors across multiple disciplines. Under expert supervision, they will experience what it takes to emerge as an accomplished designer on the world stage.

The judges of the Lexus Design Award 2019 returning from last year are: Sir David Adjaye, eminent architect of such innovative works as the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (named Cultural Event of the Year by the New York Times) and SPYSCAPE, an interactive experience museum with a unique intrigue and espionage theme; Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Architecture and Design at The Museum of Modern Art who is also curator of the XXII Triennale di Milano, Broken Nature: Design Takes on Human Survival; and Yoshihiro Sawa, President of Lexus International, whose vision for the competition encompasses the brand’s passion to foster a new generation of creativity.   Their judging criteria for the finalists will be how well their prototypes anticipate the needs of people and tomorrow’s society.  The designs will also need to demonstrate innovation and originality while at the same time being captivating and engaging to the public.

The deadline for entries is 28 October. Finalists will be selected in December and announced to the public in January 2019. Further information can be found at and by following #LexusDesignAward.


Lexus Press Team

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  • Sebastian Wrong

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  • Yoshihiro Sawa

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  • Paola Antonelli

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  • Sir David Adjaye

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