GEMINI Laboratory GLOBAL DESIGN AWARDS WINNERS ANNOUNCEMENT

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We are excited to announce that the winning works of the first edition of the GEMINI Laboratory GLOBAL DESIGN AWARDS have been decided!

In this award, we sought entries that offered new design approaches alongside concrete ideas in an era where the virtual and physical horizons are merging.

The application period lasted from February 15th to April 29th, 2024, and we welcomed submissions from a total of 9 countries. with creators from a wide variety of fields participating.

Among all these entries, 7 works were ultimately selected as winners of this award. In addition to prize money, the winners will also have their works adopted as official data in the data library AltField that is being developed by GEMINI Laboratory.

Please look forward to the future endeavors of the winners, as well as the ongoing activities of GEMINI Laboratory and AltField.

Gran Prize

Title|
Digital mimicry

Explanation
Plant mimicry is a concept in evolutionary biology, referring to the phenomenon where plant organisms transform to physiologically or morphologically resemble other organisms, thus enhancing their adaptability. Mimicry in plants towards their environment shares similarities with AI mimicking humans. By mapping AI’s creation of shapes and texts imitating humans to plants mimicking their surroundings, we can explore the commonalities between AI evolution and natural evolution. Therefore, I have mimicked human creative acts on computers with a theme of plants.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/manymany.bot/
Behance: https://www.behance.net/aliciali4

Comments|
Mark Foster Gage|
I thought this was a beautiful project that invites new ways of thinking about crossovers between the digital and the biological. Both are systems to which humans have some access that are capable of managing massive amounts of complexity– far more than the human mind can process. Because of this I think the fusion of the two offers vital new territory for functional and aesthetic imagination.

Pamela Golbin|
Using a fundamental concept in evolutionary biology, Digital Mimicry aims to explore shared traits between AI and natural evolution. I was taken by its poetic and impactful title and discovering how this work not only brought together physical experiences and digital qualities but also included practical possibilities.

Liam Wong|
Digital Mimicry encapsulates the fascinating intersection between biology and technology, highlighting a parallel between both natural and artificial forms of evolution. It stood out by utilising Unreal Engine and VR to blend the virtual and physical.

Runner-Up

Title|
Meta Blessing

Explanation
“Meta Blessing” fuses Buddhist culture and NFT technology, bringing traditional blessings into the metaverse. It reimagines Buddhist objects in a modern style, incorporates AR, and turns blessings into NFTs, exploring spirituality in digital realms.

“Meta Blessing” is a groundbreaking project that intersects the realms of religion and the digital universe. It leverages the concept of NFTs to authenticate and preserve sacred Buddhist objects, which have been blessed by a temple master. These NFTs not only verify the authenticity of the objects but also their connection to respected spiritual teachings. Augmented reality technology is employed to visually demonstrate this authenticity, creating an immersive experience that blends the physical with the digital.

This project serves as a bridge between the ancient wisdom of Buddhism and the modern capabilities of the metaverse. It offers a fresh perspective on preserving and transmitting spiritual assets, showcasing the potential of NFTs in validating and safeguarding these valuable cultural and religious practices. The use of augmented reality adds a dynamic layer, enabling users to visually engage with the spiritual significance of the objects in an interactive and contemporary manner.

By blurring the lines between the tangible and the virtual, “Meta Blessing” highlights the capacity of technology to enrich spiritual experiences, encouraging new ways of thinking about the role of ancient traditions in today’s digital world. It opens up possibilities for spiritual preservation and transmission through technology, marking a significant step in the evolution of religious practice in the age of digital transformation.

Portfolio: Https://qiuangli.design
Instagram: Https://www.instagram.com/jonylqa

Comments|
Mark Foster Gage|
What I liked about this project was it asks us to consider the role of digital and virtual technologies in the area of religion– something that I in my 30 years of working on these areas had never really considered. The digital, naturally, has been far more associated with science and technological progress than ephemeral human pursuits like religion–but if we know anything about our own history as a species is that the two will always, eventually, intersect. I find designing this intersection to be a fascinating excercise for envisioning new human futures.

Pamela Golbin|
Spirituality was not a theme I expected but I was surprised and intrigued by how it was explored in Meta Blessing which aims to bring traditional blessings into a virtual immersive experience. A seamless ecosystem proposes a fresh perspective on preserving and transmitting spiritual assets.

Liam Wong|
The use of augmented reality to enhance sacred objects provides a unique experience that bridges the virtual and phyiscal: ancient traditions with the digital age.

GEMINI Laboratory Special Award

Title|
free will material

Explanation
A material whose texture and shape can be freely changed digitally. The user can change the texture and shape of the material at will.
In general digital libraries, users purchase and download assets with pre-made textures and shapes, but what we propose here are materials and objects that constantly change in quality and shape digitally.

The image was created using PLATEAU.
URL: https://www.mlit.go.jp/plateau

X: https://twitter.com/metya_sodatuyo
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/dondon_sodatsuyo
WEB: https://tamura-ikuho.com

Comments from GEMINI Laboratory|
This METASKIN captures the urban landscape as if it were alive, leaving a strong impression. The shapes, which make the city seem like it is breathing, appear to inspire new creativity. Additionally, it possesses the characteristic of continuously changing by the hands of the viewers, possibly forming different meanings and shapes based on their perspectives and emotions. This approach, which seems to express the city as a living organism, is visually and emotionally stirring, and it conveys the potential of materials.

GEMINI Laboratory Special Award

Title|
If you’ll dense, I’ll dense too

Explanation
As cities get rapidly, often unpleasantly, denser, the urban environments start to lack vibrancy and livelihood. The project speaks a response to urban densification with creativity and resilience, using art as a means to engage with and possibly mitigate the challenges of densely populated areas. It implies that art and cultural expressions will become as integral and packed into the city’s fabric as its buildings and infrastructure, enhancing the urban experience; as cities grow more densely populated, so will public art’s presence and importance.

“If you’ll dense, I’ll dense too” suggests not just a visual or physical densification of art but also a lively, spirited interaction with the city’s growth — a celebration of urban development through the rhythm and movement of public art, turning the challenge of density into an opportunity for dynamic cultural and artistic expression.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bryanlee.design/

Comments from GEMINI Laboratory|
This METASKIN proposes a method to restore vibrancy and liveliness to urban environments in response to rapid urban densification, using expressions through 3D data collected from diverse creators. The phrase “If you’ll dense, I’ll dense too” is very compelling. It emphasizes the importance of public art, enriches the urban experience, and in today’s data-saturated world, this approach creates opportunities for new cultural and artistic expressions. At the same time, it expands our imagination about the relationship between digital data and cities and their utilization in the next generation.

Judges Awards

◉Mark Foster Gage Award

Title|
Ethereal Embrace

Explanation|
Step into a realm where love’s tapestry is woven amidst architectural wonders, where partners sculpt their own realities, not with bricks and mortar, but with the ethereal essence of their hearts. Behold Ethereal Embrace, a digital sanctuary where inner beauty reigns supreme, and bonds are forged in the fires of creativity and imagination.

In Ethereal Embrace, love transcends the superficial constraints of physicality. Here, couples craft their own utopias, each a testament to their shared dreams and aspirations. Whether it’s a tranquil oasis, a cozy haven tucked away in nature’s embrace, or a bustling metropolis pulsating with life, every world is a love letter inscribed upon the virtual canvas of the soul.

Here, love knows no bounds, stretching across virtual landscapes like tendrils of moonlight weaving through the night sky. Couples lose themselves in romantic escapades beneath a canopy of stars, wandering hand in hand through enchanted forests alive with magical digital canvas of eternity.

But Ethereal Embrace is more than a mere conduit for love—it is a vibrant community, a tapestry woven from the threads of shared experiences and shared dreams. Through collaborative endeavors and collective celebrations, users find solace in each other’s company, forging connections that transcend the confines of space and time.

In the end, Ethereal Embrace empowers individuals to cultivate relationships rooted in authenticity and mutual respect. By embracing the inner radiance of their partners and cherishing the uniqueness of their spirits and enduring love.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/paraarchitects/

Comments from Mark Foster Gage|
Unusual for digital project, this one really seeks to operate on the human capacity for emotion. We see low resolution digital enviroments that somehow convey the oldest of our inter-human experiences– love. There is no reason emotion, and even love, can’t be fertile areas for architectural and digital research and re-imagincation.

◉Pamela Golbin Award

Title|
Limited Feelings

Explanation
“LIMITED FEELINGS“ is a phygital collection developed by Soledad Gallardo.
It uses different color intensities, volatile textures, and light fabrics to express the inner world filled with suppressed feelings. Through the creation and evolution of each piece in this collection, an analogy is created between the designs and the phases in which the impending hustle and bustle of conflicting emotions is handled.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/burbush_design/
Behance: https://www.behance.net/soledad_gallardo
Website: https://soledadgallardo.com/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/soledadgallardovillar/

Comments from Pamela Golbin|
Fashion and technology have only just started a creative conversation. I was happy to see that one of the entries explored the intricacies and challenges posed by Fashion. The phygital collection presented in “Limited Feelings” used refined digital representations that successfully rendered the weight, physical properties and design possibilities of future textile materials and the finished silhouettes.

◉Liam Wong Award

Title|
過密流幽怪 – Overcrowded Specter Mirage –

Explanation
‘The Overcrowded Specter Mirage Archive’ is an 3D digital archive designed to eternally preserve the fleeting existences born from the travels of people within Tokyo’s dense underground spaces.

The complex network of Tokyo’s underground, designed with the diverse activities of its users in mind, intricately intertwines. The journey of an individual through this complex underground space becomes the backbone of the Overcrowded Specter Mirage. By capturing momentary encounters with the surrounding crowd through 3D scanning, a corporeal form is given to the specters, completing their silhouettes.

Essentially, Overcrowded Specter Mirages manifest at the intersection of three distinct bodies: the calculated bodies of crowds for urban space design, the body of an individual’s journey with purpose, and the bodies of the multitude traveling for various different purposes.

This project seeks collectors to infinitely expand this collection by gathering Overcrowded Specter Mirages discovered in various locations and times through their unique travels. Why not join us in archiving the invisible dance of the city and naming the phantoms you encounter?

X: https://twitter.com/sion_xr
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sion_xr/

Comments from Liam Wong|
At first, the project’s aesthetic drew me in, but I soon appreciated its deeper layers and potential for growth into a larger endeavor. It invites us all to participate in documenting the “momentary encounters” cited by the project, the city’s unseen rhythms.

From the Judges, Upon Completing the Judging Process

Mark Foster Gage|
It has been wonderful to serve as a judge on this competition. So often competitions ask of entrants to do things that the world already knows how to do—design a museum, or a park, or a house. What I found important about this competition was that it asked entrants to re-imagine new ways of designing, and therefore new ways of thinking. We are swiftly entering a world where every physical object has a digital corollary– and we have no idea how this “twinning” will impact us as designers, or even as humans. I enjoyed seeing the projects that wrestled with this, in particular the ones that started to address emotional, ineffable, or even religious ideas about this intersection.

Pamela Golbin|
For this first edition of the Gemini Laboratory Global Design Awards, the candidates showed enthusiasm and creativity to express ideas that technically were ambitious. In this nascent field, it was exciting to discover so many unexpected projects that delighted by their imagination and intrigued by their concepts. It will take time to construct an entirely new worldview from materials that may transcend the five senses, but thanks to this award a platform is available.
As a judge, I was inspired by our deliberations with Liam, Mark and the whole Gemini team. I look forward to seeing the development of Gemini’s platform and data library and how this awards initiative can drive design interest to envision alternative world views.

Liam Wong|
I was honored to serve on the jury, where we reviewed a broad spectrum of applications.
Each juror offered a different perspective based on their unique design experiences and interests. With my background in video games, I was happy to see projects that seamlessly blended virtual and physical elements and particularly those utilsing game engines.The potential for future innovations in this space is truly exciting.

Details of Award-winning Works

Details of the award-winning works are available on “Alt Field.”

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