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German Design Awards announces five newcomer finalists

By Esther Hut

Oct 12, 2021


Five finalists for the category “Newcomer” have been announced by the jury of the German Design Awards. Out of 238 nominated young designers from German design colleges, Anne Bansen, Maria Buerger, Kalina Todorova Kondeva, Justine Masché and Felix Thode impressed the jury with their portfolios. According to a press release “the awards demonstrate the importance of innovative, young design for the competitiveness and future viability of medium-sized companies and the German economy.”

The five selected designers have different disciplines such as product, industrial, communication and fashion design. The winner will receive a price of 15,000 euros. The winner will be announced in Spring 2022.

About the finalists and their work:

Anne Bansen

Bansen focuses on universal design and user experience in her work, whereby the topic of safety, health and care in daily life plays an important role. She studied English and history at the Humboldt University in Berlin. This was followed by a bachelor's degree in industrial design at the University of Applied Sciences, which she completed with distinction. Bansen is currently working on her master’s at the Fachhochschule Potsdam University of Applied Science.

Maria Buerger

Buerger combines digital media with narrative elements in her work and explores the possibilities of immersive technologies from a female perspective. She studied communication design at the HTW Berlin University of Applied Science in the Design and Culture department, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts. She was a Heinrich Böll Foundation scholar and was involved in initiatives like »Art Meets Education« and the »Digital Peace Talks«. In 2020, she became the Head of Communications at the Deutsche Theatertechnische Gesellschaft, where she now supervises »Neustart Kultur«, a programme supporting the post-lockdown relaunch of culture and media, on behalf of the German government.

Kalina Todorova Kondeva

Todorova Kondeva began studies in industrial design at the BUW Bergischen Universität Wuppertal after completing her A-levels. After completing her studies successfully with a Bachelor of Arts in 2020, Kondeva decided to pursue another degree in user interface design at the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design in Kiel, where she is currently studying. At the same time, she is a working student at Chroma Experience in the UI/UX team.

Justine Masché

Masché focuses on the emotional connection between clothing and the wearer in the form of clothing memories. She trained to become a custom dressmaker at the Mainz State Theatre. Afterwards, she began her studies at the Berlin University of the Arts in the Fashion Design department, which she completed in 2019, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts. Masché has lived in London since January 2020, where she works as Product Developer / Design Coordinator for the fashion label Vivienne Westwood.

Felix Thode

Thode focuses on the topics of manipulation of facts in international politics, social injustice and human rights violations in the global supply chain of high-tech products as well as environmental topics. After completing his A-levels in 2016, he enrolled in the Hochschule Fresenius University of Applied Science, ecosign / Akademie für Gestaltung design academy. He successfully completed his Bachelor of Arts in sustainable design with a specialisation in editorial design in 2021.

Photo: Christoph Hengelhaupt, Source: German Design Council