12.–16.01.2025 #immcologne

EN Icon Pfeil Icon Pfeil
EN Element 13300 Element 12300 DE
Pure Talents Contest 2024:

These are the winners of the imm cologne's young designer competition

Technologically intelligent, functional and mobile - these attributes are combined in outstanding designs that have been realised with a sustainable concept and minimal use of materials. Four particularly impressive designs were selected from over 1,000 submissions to the newly conceived Pure Talent Contest: a movable sauna, roof tiles made from recycled palm fronds, an artfully crafted textile screen and a foldable three-seater sofa. Visitors have the opportunity to experience the award-winning designs at the imm cologne until 18 January.

Winner - Lifestyle and home living in cities with limited space( SPACES)

MFG* Mobile Sauna by Emil Löber, Sophia Reißenweber, Friedrich Gerlach (Germany; space concept)

This collaborative work applies the Tiny House principle to an unusual type of room: a mobile sauna. In keeping with this function, the micro-architecture is suitably dimensioned for compact spaces such as car parking spaces, and the support leg transforms into a drawbar for transport. The four square metre room with its house-like silhouette combines the typical light-coloured wood of a sauna with an unusually transparent, translucent outer shell that creates interesting refractions of light.

As a product, the MFG Mobile Sauna represents a reinterpretation of a type that is strongly characterised by tradition, particularly in Scandinavia: a sauna that is explicitly not private, but built and used communally, with new materials and a new conception of space. The most exciting thing, however, is that this sauna is mobile - a technically intelligent challenge in which the entire construction is tilted and pulled by just three people on foot. Conceptually, a sauna on wheels used in an urban context challenges the social and architectural conventions associated with the sauna. The mobile "guerrilla sauna" is thus a "vehicle" in a double sense for opening up or reclaiming urban space: a concept that we believe is as clever as it is humorous.
* Note: MFG stands for "Mobile for Serenity"

MFG MOBILE SAUNA by Emil Löber, Sophia Reißenweber, Friedrich Gerlach

To the product

Winner - Lifestyle and home living in a circular society (OBJECTS)

"Wasted Treasure" by Carolin Schelkle (Germany; object)

The work looks for alternatives to conventional materials. Palm oil production produces an enormous amount of biomass - especially from the leaves of the palm tree. The plant fibres are difficult to biodegrade due to their fire and water resistance and stability. It is precisely these problematic properties that "Wasted Treasure" turns into the opposite and uses them as an advantage: dried and finely ground, the fibres are made into a weather-resistant yet "breathing", lightweight building material by adding limestone and the recycled material brick dust. Carolin Schelkle's work illustrates the advantages of the material using the example of roof tiles.

The intelligent utilisation of industrial waste is an important topic and affects all areas of living and building. We like the fact that the designer has transferred the original use of palm fronds as weather protection or for roofing into a contemporary, industrial and sustainable form. The idea of turning palm fronds into roof tiles has a very special appeal. She has found an unpretentious but well thought-out example of an application with a wide range of uses, which works by adding purely natural binding agents. The holistic, process-inclusive approach of the material-driven project is also exemplary.

WASTED TREASURE by Carolin Schelkle

Winner - Lifestyle and home living as a statement/message/concept (OBJECTS)

"Pleated Partition Screen" by Fenna van der Klei (Netherlands; object)

The "Pleated Partition Screen" is a screen made entirely of textile. The work is a reinterpretation of traditional folding techniques such as pleating, opening up new possibilities for sustainable textile home objects that bring warmth and lightness to interior design. The textile is stiffened without binders, adhesives or hard materials. The stability is achieved primarily through the folding technique and felt elements integrated into the resulting pockets.

We are particularly impressed by the design's artful use of colours and patterns. Among the many designs currently seen for this type of product, it seems particularly pleasing - you want to touch the surface and move the undulating structure. The product concept combines well thought-out details and simplicity - a well-functioning and industrially producible low-tech solution achieved through skilful processing using innovative craftsmanship. The self-supporting structure contains no supporting structure apart from the small felt dividers, making it easy to separate and transport in flat packaging. In short, the screen is a beautiful visual statement that works as a sensual and functional design element at home, in the office and in the hospitality sector.



Anton Defant's design was honoured with a Special Mention "Ballast" impressed the jury in several respects.

Statement of the jury: The designer describes his competition entry as "probably the quickest three-seater sofa in the world to install". The sofa has been radically reduced to a seat and backrest made from a mesh material used in airline luggage security, which is clamped to a foldable frame.

For a sofa that can be folded into a small package in minutes, Ballast offers surprisingly comfortable seating. It requires little material, can be moved easily in any kind of space, fits into small flats and perfectly fulfils the requirements of a nomadic lifestyle characterised by many moves. The design inspired by outdoor furniture has been intelligently transferred to the interior. The design dispenses with the larger upholstery and foams usually found in sofas, which also appears relevant in terms of material separation and circularity. The work is a successful and contemporary example of a tradition of experimental design that draws inspiration from utilitarian design to create products for the domestic or cosy context.

Ballast by Anton Defant