Designing the Modern World Award

By Carren Jao / Published by Dwell
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Choosing the finalists and, eventually, the winners wasn't the only difficult task at the Modern World Awards. Designing the face of the award was a feat in and of itself. We chatted with Creative Director Kyle Blue to get the low down on the award's design. “With the logo, we wanted to do something that was iconic and playful,” he says.
Dwell's Kyle Blue in front of the Modern World Awards exhibit at Dwell on Design.

Dwell's Kyle Blue in front of the Modern World Awards exhibit at Dwell on Design.

"In the Modern World" is a section in the magazine that has been there since the magazine’s inception. With such a long-standing inspiration, Kyle’s team designed a simple and elegant icon.

"The form is an 'M' and a 'W' together. We’ve titled it so it looks like a cube. The logo lended itself to what eventually became the award," he says.

The award took the form of a 4.5" cherry wood cube produced by House Industries. The M and W were each silkscreened on two faces of the wood, while the winning category and winner’s name adorned one face.

"We used natural wood because we didn’t want to do anything that would outshine the products. We really wanted to use a simple, humble material and let the products pop off of that," says Kyle

The result was a logo that seamlessly blends with every Dwell page and an award that every winner would be proud to have on his mantle.

Carren Jao


Carren Jao is an arts, architecture and design writer from Manila, Philippines now based in Los Angeles. She’s written for local and international publications like Bluprint, Contemporary Art Philippines, Angeleno and the Architect’s Newspaper. She relishes exploring new cities by walking its streets, taking public transportation and listening to its residents’ stories. Find out what else she’s up to at or follow her on Twitter @ccjao.

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