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French Institute of Design: the latest competitions

Well known for its Janus, the Institut Français du Design is sometimes less known for its involvement in interior design. As the guarantor of “French design”, the IFD has been acting as an observatory in all sectors of industry and commerce since 1951. Between the Sino-French Grand Prix and the MAPIC, a look at recent competitions.

Chosen a decade ago by the Chinese organization CIID88, which promotes the work of Chinese interior architects and designers on the international scene, the French Institute of Design selects interior and product design projects from a large number of proposals. It is under the name “Grand Prix Design Paris” that the jury chose the best projects.

Elegant Sobriety


Last December, the 11 French jurors of the Chinese-French competition awarded 16 Golden Awards to various projects including interior design for residences, commercial spaces, but also furniture and products. The jury, composed of Olivier Bragard, Odile Duchenne, Jacques Mandorla, Béatrice Mange, Stéphane Quigna, Matthieu Rochette, Michel Sanlaville, Anne-Marie Sargueil, Olivier Poiseau, Isabelle Hernio and Chantal Aïra Crouan, favored elegance, harmony and values related to the Chinese identity

Twelve Thai Pig Project, Star Matai kitchen brand store
Kindergarten integrated garden project, Shenyang Hunnan District
Queens bar magic project

These awards recognize the quality of traditional know-how, careful workmanship, harmony between materials and light, and the integration of the natural landscape in architectural projects. The 11 members observed the youthfulness of the participating teams and their ability to intelligently blend tradition and contemporary spirit. Mission accomplished again for an IFD that is becoming more and more international.

More than just design


These major prizes are not the only example of the French Institute of Design’s intervention, beyond the Janus expected by the design community. Last November, the Institute organized the first Best Stores Design by French Designers, which became the 12th category of the MAPIC Awards and recognized French excellence in retail. Lacoste Arena by Cigue was awarded a prize by the MAPIC jury, along with the three other nominees selected by the jury organized by the French Institute (Van Cleef & Arpels in Seoul by the Jouin-Manku agency, Bienvenue en cuisine by Market Value and Ateliers-Boutiques YesYes by Brio).

In a completely different field, for the past several years, the French Institute of Design has also organized the Explore competition for art and design school students, inviting them to capture reality by proposing a photo or a mini-series with commentary on a theme: after work, the city, and then the essentials, the theme for 2023 is “the beauties of tomorrow”. The jury is composed of personalities from various backgrounds – design, art history, human sciences, the exchanges often allow to decipher weak signals and detect future scenarios.

Cecile Papapietro-Matsuda