British designer Samuel Wilkinson and product design company Hulger have won the Brit Insurance Design of the Year 2011 for their redesign of the low energy light bulb. Beating over 90 entries to claim the winning title, 2011 jury chair Stephen Bayley presented the award at today’s awards ceremony held at the Design Museum.
The Plumen 001 is a sculpted energy saving light bulb. Stephen Bayley said of the winning entry, "The Plumen light bulb is a good example of the ordinary thing done extraordinarily well, bringing a small measure of delight to an everyday product."
The jury noted that while low-energy light bulbs have never been regarded as a stylish product, the Plumen addresses this by creating an aesthetic bulb which works just like any low-energy bulb. By bending the glass tubes of a light bulb, Plumen have designed a product that uses 80% less energy and lasts eight times longer than an incandescent bulb.
Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum says that the bulb is: "a worthy winner that is both beautiful and smart. It does away with the superfluous to achieve maximum economy of means. It’s a bulb that doesn’t need a shade and so goes a long way to make up for the loss of the Edison original."
Jury member Will Self added: "I don't think any of the judges feel this is the dernier cri in terms of what will be done with the low-energy light bulb, but if you'll forgive the pun -- they are definitely a light leading the way. 2011 was not a year to reward high-end design devised purely for conceptual reasons or added-value results. We felt these bulbs were neat, appealing and covetable in the right, affordable way. Light is, of course, primary to design, without it there can be very little, if any. The design of light sources is thus an elemental component of a design aesthetic."
The Plumen 001 along with the other shortlisted designs are currently on show at the Brit Insurance Designs of the Year exhibition at the Design Museum until August 7 2011. See here for our guide to the entries, including those in the graphics category.