The Young Designer of the Year prize of 2017, awarded by Design Forum Finland, is given to textile and surface designer Reeta Ek (born 1979).
Reeta Ek (MA) is a freelance designer living and working in Helsinki. She has created textile designs for companies such as Marimekko, Lapuan Kankurit, Nanso, and Samuji, among others. Typical of her designs are repetition and rhythm, born along with the creative working process and drawing by hand. Reeta Ek also does graphic design and illustrations.
According to the prize jury, Reeta Ek is a fine example of a professional, creative young designer whose exposure and success in Finland has been based more on strong professional skill than an efficiently marketed designer brand. Reeta Ek has a unique and distinctive style, and her works combine intense sensitivity with a strong, articulate execution. She has been involved in various comebacks of Finnish brands, designing printed and woven patterns that have resonated with consumers and resulted in commercial success. Reeta Ek represents the common method of modern textile designers where independent work and various collaboration projects have a natural rotation. The works and visual identity of Ek form a very distinctive, fresh, timeless and lucid repertory.
Design Forum Finland's Young Designer of the Year prize was established in 2000 and it it awarded now for the 16th time. It can be given to one or several individuals or a team exhibiting new, creative concepts and skills in design. The purpose of the prize is to encourage young designers to carry on uncompromising and original work in design.
The prize jury of 2017 consisted of CEO Petteri Kolinen / Design Forum Finland, Chairman of the Board Mika Ståhlberg / Krogerus Attorneys, Customer Experience Director Mikko Koivisto / Hellon, Designer in Residence Pirjo Kääriäinen / Aalto University, and designer Terhi Tuominen / Dayground (Young Designer of the Year 2009). Krogerus is the main partner of the prize in 2017 and has supported it by donating the prize sum of 5,000 euros and supporting the exhibition arrangements.
Photo: Lina Jelanski / Duotone