The Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum has announced First Lady Michelle Obama will celebrate the 2012 National Design Awards Friday, July 13, with a White House luncheon for the winners of the awards. In support of the First Lady’s emphasis on education and outreach to the Washington, D.C., community, the award winners will participate in an education program for local high school students before the event. Mrs. Obama serves as the honorary patron for this year’s National Design Awards.
The museum also announced the selection of Red Burns as this year’s Design Patron, in recognition of her outstanding support and patronage within the design community. Unlike the other National Design Awards, which are selected by a jury of leading figures in design, the Design Patron Award winner is chosen by the museum. Burns is arts professor and chief collaborations officer for the Interactive Telecommunications Program at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. She is being recognized for her role as founder of ITP and for her innovations and achievements in the field of communication technology. During the 1970s, as head of NYU’s Alternate Media Center, she designed and directed a series of telecommunications projects, including two-way television for and by senior citizens, telecommunications applications to serve the developmentally disabled and one of the first Teletext field trials in the United States (at WETA in Washington, D.C.).
The 2012 National Design Awards recipients are:
- Lifetime Achievement: Richard Saul Wurman
- Design Mind: Janine Benyus
- Design Patron: Red Burns
- Corporate and Institutional Achievement: Design that Matters
- Architecture Design: Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects
- Communication Design: Rebeca Méndez
- Fashion Design: Thom Browne
- Interaction Design: Evan Roth
- Interior Design: Clive Wilkinson Architects
- Landscape Architecture: Stoss Landscape Urbanism
- Product Design: Scott Wilson