LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Grand Prix Winner Announced
  • Portable Solar Distiller
  • Henry Glogau

TOKYO, Japan (April 27, 2021)―Lexus today announced that "Portable Solar Distiller" by Henry Glogau has won the LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Grand Prix, which drew 2,079 entries from 66 countries. Chosen as the project that best encompasses "Design for a Better Tomorrow" based on the three key principles of the Lexus brand―Anticipate, Innovate and Captivate―the Portable Solar Distiller provides clean drinking water from polluted water or sea water, using sunlight. Merging local resource production with community architecture, this low-tech solution also serves as a shaded gathering place.

Upon receiving the award, Henry Glogau, said, "It's a great honor to be selected as this year's Grand Prix winner, and I'd like to say thank you to the judges. When you look at the level and quality of the finalists and their projects and the progress that has been made throughout, any one of us could have been the winner this year. I'd also like to thank the Mentors―their expertise in a variety of fields really strengthened not only our designs but us also as designers. We as finalists will cherish the thought-provoking questions and conversations we had, and we were so fortunate to experience them. And lastly, a massive thank you to Lexus. Being part of a prestigious award like this with a company that is truly passionate about Design for a Better Tomorrow, and which gives up-and-coming designers a platform and solid foundation to build their design futures on is incredible".

After selection of the Grand Prix winner, Judge Greg Lynn commented that "Congratulations to the winner and it worked so well and provided mentorship and resources that let great ideas flourish. The winner was one of the designers who surprised me the most from the application to the final submission. The consistent mission of the winner persisted while the transformation in scale and social function was exemplary. The design became more refined, more functional and more open source during the process. The ability to produce working prototypes was important to all the participants but to the winner it pointed towards the manifold potential of the system that became much more than just a product or appliance but instead a portable, deployable infrastructure".

The six finalists, selected in January of this year, were mentored by Joe Doucet, Sabine Marcelis, Mariam Kamara, and Sputniko!. These four world-class creators guided the finalists in surmounting challenges on the way to the fully-refined proposals. The mentoring process was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that is certain to impact each finalist's career on the international design stage.

Lexus thanks the mentors, all vastly experienced masters of their fields, for generously sharing their specialized knowledge and encouraging the finalists to bring out the full potential of their ideas.

Lexus also pays tribute to Paola Antonelli, Dong Gong, Greg Lynn and Simon Humphries, the elite panels who judged the entries. Their uncompromising standards and incisive analysis make it possible for the LEXUS DESIGN AWARD to fulfill its mission of supporting the next generation of creators.

All six finalists, including the Grand Prix winner, Henry Glogau, have honored us with their lively curiosity, professional attitude toward their work, and the impressive proposals that their creativity has brought into this world.

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Title of workCY-BO

Sustainable, reusable packaging material that can be assembled like cells.


CY-BO is a new form of cytologically-inspired packaging material that can transform into various shapes by combining the pieces together. Infinitely reusable and rearrangeable, it can be converted into all manner of products for different applications depending on the ideas of the user.

NameKenji Abe


Kenji Abe

Kenji Abe is a graduate of the Tama Art University Product Design Department, who now works as a product designer based in Tokyo. While designing imaging products professionally, he also pursues personal design activities. He is curious about creating a better tomorrow for humans, nature, animals and the earth, and wishes to propose beautiful solutions to the problems we face.

Title of workHeartfelt

A device that reimagines what being 'present' means in an isolated world.


Heartfelt explores what 'being present' might look like during the age of a pandemic, and seeks to assist with the anxiety and emotional stresses of being in isolation. The device reflects the heartbeat of your loved one, and promotes psychological support and personal connection.

NameGayle Lee and Jessica Vea

New Zealand (Gayle Lee), Tonga (Jessica Vea) / Based in New Zealand

Gayle Lee and Jessica Vea

Gayle Lee and Jessica Vea are recent Bachelor of Creative Technologies graduates from Auckland University of Technology. They are passionate about creating meaningful products that help others and promoting interdisciplinary collaboration between different fields and practices. They are hoping to start their Master of Creative Technologies degrees in 2021.

Title of workInTempo

Phone cover and app that may help distract from stressful situations by novel usage of rhythm and music.


InTempo is an app and phone cover that aids people facing emotional stress (e.g. panic attacks, sociophobia) in public spaces / during public actions. Touching spots on the phone cover in time with music may help people calm themselves down.

NameAlina Holovatiuk


Alina Holovatiuk

Alina Holovatiuk is a young architect from Kyiv, Ukraine. She is currently continuing her studies and research at Kyiv National University of Construction and Architecture in the Information Technologies in Architecture Department. Her approach to design is based on special attention to human emotions and their perception of the world.

Title of workKnitX

Digital 3-D knitting of electronic textiles for immersive multi-modal gestural, auditory, and tactile material interaction.


KnitX explores the boundaries between electronics, textiles, and musical interfaces, imbuing interactivity to everyday fabrics. The result is a musical cloth that responds to tactile and proxemic gestures and an interactive carpet that evokes the bi-directionality between dance and music.

NameIrmandy Wicaksono

CountryIndonesia / Based in USA

Irmandy Wicaksono

Irmandy Wicaksono is an electrical and textile engineer and designer. He is currently a Ph.D. student in the Responsive Environments, MIT Media Lab. His research focuses on developing soft and textile-based electronics for various applications ranging from health and well-being, human-computer interaction to interactive media and environments.

Title of workPortable Solar Distiller

A portable and low-tech Solar Distiller, which merges water production with community architecture.

Portable Solar Distiller

A low-tech solution utilizing sunlight to distill polluted and sea water. The portable design merges local resource production with community architecture, providing freshwater and a shaded gathering place. A lightweight, versatile structure configurable in different ways and materials, adapting to local environments and user needs.

NameHenry Glogau

CountryDual New Zealand - Austria / Based in Denmark

Henry Glogau

Henry Glogau is a New Zealander who recently graduated from the Royal Danish Academy in Copenhagen, Denmark. His master's degree specialized in Architecture and Extreme Environments, where he explored present and future global challenges in expeditions to diverse locations. Henry is now working as an Architect at GXN, the green innovation unit of 3XN.

Title of workTerracotta Valley Wind

A terracotta evaporative cooling system for subway stations utilizing train-induced wind to function.

Terracotta Valley Wind

A terracotta evaporative cooling system that cools subway stations during summer and reduces energy consumption. Terracotta is an inexpensive and accessible clay material. Its porous nature allows water to quickly evaporate, while utilizing the unused wind resource in subway stations, maximizing the value of train-induced wind.

NameIntsui Design (Yilei Lyu, Chenkai Guo, Baohua Sheng, Yu Zhang)

CountryChina / Based in Japan

Intsui Design

Intsui Design is a design group based in Tokyo. They are currently pursuing Master's degrees at Tama Art University in the Integrated Design department. They explore the relationship between subconscious human behaviors and design. Their design practice focuses on people's intuition and natural responses to objects and the environment.





Paola Antonelli is Senior Curator of Architecture & Design at The Museum of Modern Art, as well as MoMA's founding Director of Research & Development. Her goal is to promote design's understanding, until its positive influence on the world is universally acknowledged. Her work investigates design's impact on everyday experience, often including overlooked objects and practices, and combining design, architecture, art, science, and technology.

She has curated shows, written books, lectured worldwide, and taught in several schools, including Harvard and UCLA. Following the XXII Triennale di Milano in 2019―Broken Nature, devoted to the idea of restorative design, now on view in reduced format at The Museum of Modern Art―she has opened at MoMA the exhibition Material Ecology, on the work of architect Neri Oxman. She is currently working on several new sessions of her MoMA R&D Salons; and on the Instagram series @design.emergency―conceived with design critic Alice Rawsthorn―devoted to the role of design in the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.




Dong Gong founded Vector Architects in 2008. He and Vector Architects have been invited to various exhibitions including 2018 FREESPACE Venice Biennale, and won awards internationally including "100+ Best Architecture Firms" selected by Domus (2019); being nominated by Swiss Architectural Award (2018); the Overall Winner of Italian Archmarathon Awards (2016); "Design Vanguard" selected by Architectural Record (2014).

He has been invited as guest speaker and critic by universities, academic and professional institutions including Tsinghua University (China), University of Illinois (USA), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (Switzerland), Société Française des Architectes (France), etc. In 2019, the renowned architectural journal AV Monographs published a monograph of Vector Architects titled "Cosmopolitan Vernacular" (vol.220).

His representative works include Seashore Library, Seashore Chapel, Alila Hotel in Yangshuo, the Renovation of the Captain's House, Changjiang Art Museum, and Suzhou Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum.




Greg Lynn is the founder and owner of Greg Lynn FORM and cofounder and CEO at the robotics company Piaggio Fast Forward. In addition to buildings he has designed high performance sailboats, high technology robots, as well as furniture and consumer products for Vitra, Alessi, Swarovski, and Nike. He has served on numerous corporate executive and advisory boards and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Center for Architecture.

He won the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture and represented the United States in the American Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture twice. He received the American Academy of Arts & Letters Architecture Award and was awarded a fellowship from United States Artists. He is currently o. Univ. Prof. Arch. at the angewandte Wien and Studio Professor at UCLA. He was the Davenport Professor at Yale University, Professor of Spatial Conception at the ETHZ, adjunct faculty at Columbia University and visiting faculty at Harvard GSD. He is the author of nine books.




Simon Humphries is Head of Toyota & Lexus Global Design. He was appointed to oversee design for both brands in 2018. As Head of Lexus Global Design Humphries seeks to define Lexus' unique values in the form of a brand philosophy, incorporating a clear cultural reference to Lexus' Japanese heritage and building a design direction that is relevant to users around the world.

Humphries joined the company in 1994. His many roles in leadership and advanced design include defining the signature spindle grille that has become an icon for the Lexus brand. In 2016 he became President of ED2 (Toyota Europe Design Development) where his team spearheaded development of mobility concepts such as the Toyota e-Palette concept as part of the brand's transition from "automotive company" to "mobility company." Humphries began his career in design in 1988 when he was awarded the Royal Society of Arts Bursary Prize for Product Design in the UK. The award gave him the opportunity to work for Sony, which jumpstarted his passion for living and working in Japan. In his spare time Humphries enjoys carpentry and is restoring a 100-year-old Japanese farmhouse.





A designer, entrepreneur, inventor and creative director, Joe Doucet is one of the most sought-after creative talents working in America today. His work deftly hybridizes function and visual appeal while conveying layers of meaning and message. Doucet believes that design and, more importantly, a designer's thought process, can play a larger role in innovation and problem solving, as well as aesthetics. He currently holds numerous patents for his designs and inventions.

Doucet's work has been exhibited globally and has received numerous international awards, including a World Technology Award for Design Innovation and multiple Good Design Awards. Doucet was named the 2017 Winner of the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award as Product Designer―the highest honor in his field. He is also Designer of the Year 2019 finalist by Dezeen, and a recipient of Fast Company's Most Important Design Companies of 2019.




Mariam Kamara, an architect from Niger, studied architecture at the University of Washington. In 2014, Kamara founded atelier masōmī, an architecture and research practice tackling public, cultural, residential, commercial and urban design projects. Kamara believes that architects have an important role to play in creating spaces that elevate, dignify, and provide people with a better quality of life. Collaborative project, Hikma Religious and Secular Complex, won the 2017 Gold LafargeHolcim Award for Africa and Middle East, and 2018 Silver Global LafargeHolcim Award for Sustainable Architecture. An upcoming project, the Niamey Cultural Centre, is designed by Kamara under mentorship of Sir David Adjaye as part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé programme. 2019 saw Kamara named as a Laureate of the Prince Claus Award and a 2019 Royal Academy of Arts Dorfman Awards finalist. 2020 saw The New York Times name her as one of 15 Creative Women of Our Time. atelier masōmī made its debut on the 2021 AD100 list.




Sabine Marcelis is a Dutch designer who runs her practice from the harbor of Rotterdam. After graduating from the Design Academy of Eindhoven in 2011, Marcelis began working as an independent designer within the fields of product, installation and spatial design with a strong focus on materiality. Her work is characterized by pure forms which highlight material properties.

Marcelis applies a strong aesthetic point of view to her collaborations with industry specialists. This method of working allows her to intervene in the manufacturing process, using material research and experimentation to achieve new and surprising visual effects for projects both showcased in musea and commissioned by commercial clients and fashion houses.

Sabine recently won the prestigious Wallpaper awards 'Designer of the year 2020', The Elle Deco International Design award 2019 'Young designer of the year' and 'GQ Men of the year 2019' International Artist of the year.




Sputniko! is a British-Japanese artist and speculative designer based in Tokyo. She creates film and multimedia installation works which explore the social and ethical implications of emerging technologies, especially in the themes of gender and sexuality. She has presented her works in exhibitions such as the 2016 Setouchi Art Triennale, Milan International Design Triennale, Broken Nature (2019), Future and Arts at the Mori Art Museum (2019). From 2013 to 2017, Sputniko! was an Assistant Professor at the MIT Media Lab, where she founded and directed the Design Fiction research group. She is currently an Associate Professor of Design at Tokyo University of the Arts. To date, she has had pieces included in the permanent collections of museums such as the V&A and the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa.


Lexus launched in 1989 with a flagship sedan and a guest experience that helped define the premium automotive industry. In 1998, Lexus introduced the luxury crossover category with the launch of the Lexus RX. The luxury hybrid sales leader, Lexus delivered the world's first luxury hybrid and has since sold over 1.9 million hybrid vehicles.

A global luxury automotive brand with an unwavering commitment to bold, uncompromising design, exceptional craftsmanship, and exhilarating performance, Lexus has developed its lineup to meet the needs of the next generation of global luxury guests and is currently available in over 90 countries worldwide.

Lexus associates/team members across the world are dedicated to crafting amazing experiences that are uniquely Lexus, and that excite and change the world.


Launched in 2013, the LEXUS DESIGN AWARD is an international competition for up-and-coming creators from around the world. The Award seeks to contribute to society by supporting designers and creators whose work shows potential to shape a better future. Six finalists gain a rare opportunity to prototype their designs under the mentorship of leading designers. The LEXUS DESIGN AWARD provides global media exposure to drive professional career advancement.

Sustainable Development Goals

Toyota Motor Corporation works to develop and manufacture innovative, safe and high-quality products and services that create happiness by providing mobility for all. We believe that true achievement comes from supporting our customers, partners, employees, and the communities in which we operate. Since our founding over 80 years ago in 1937, we have applied our Guiding Principles in pursuit of a safer, greener and more inclusive society. Today, as we transform into a mobility company developing connected, automated, shared and electrified technologies, we also remain true to our Guiding Principles and many of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals to help realize an ever-better world, where everyone is free to move.

SDGs Initiatives


View with caption
  • Portable Solar Distiller
    Portable Solar Distiller
  • Henry Glogau
    Henry Glogau
  • LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
    LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
  • LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
    LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
  • LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
    LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
  • LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
    LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
  • LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy
    LEXUS DESIGN AWARD 2021 Trophy