Exemplary Vision, Talent and Commitment: IFI’s Global Awards Program recognizes individual luminaries of the Interiors profession. Inaugural Interior Architecture/Design awards program presents highest honors to individuals shaping the global discipline. Arthur Gensler takes the IFI Prize.
Arthur Gensler, Founder of global architecture, design and planning firm Gensler, was awarded the IFI PRIZE; highest accolade and world recognition of the International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers’ (IFI). Gensler was praised for his commitment to elevating the practice of Interior Architecture/Design to new professional standing throughout his ongoing 50-year career. His firm is renowned worldwide as a model for the architectural profession and a leader in commercial interiors, including in its portfolio such projects as the first of 600 GAP stores, the multi-decade San Francisco Airport (SFO) project, and China’s tallest building, Shanghai Tower.
The IFI PRIZE jury credited Gensler with consistently defining the profession’s standards for cultural and managerial best practices, and successfully promoting the value of good design to clients worldwide.
“Throughout, Art has demonstrated commitment to serving the design community as a leader, educator and mentor, and continues to share his most meaningful insights with the next generation of entrepreneurs and design leaders.”
In accepting the Prize, Gensler reflected on the role Interior Architecture/Design plays today and into the future. “What we do is not just permanent work, but work that sets up the future as well…We add so much to the environment and people’s lives by creating spaces and areas and activities that were never dreamed of before; and we know that each generation there has been an evolution and change.”
Design excellence and talent within the Interiors profession was recognized at the first IFI Global Awards Program (IFI GAP) as part of the IFI CONGRESS in Dubai, UAE.
Award-winning British design critic, public speaker and author Alice Rawsthorn was presented with the IFI Design Journalism Award (IFI DJA) for delivering outstanding and impactful reporting and storytelling.
The jury praised Rawsthorn’s eclectic catalogue of insightful design commentary, describing the awardee as “an internationally recognized powerhouse advocating for, critiquing, and advancing the professions of art and design. As a columnist and author, Alice illuminates the mesh of design woven into each aspect of our everyday lives and communities.” She is the author of critically acclaimed books on design, including Hello World: Where Design Meets Life and, most recently, Design as an Attitude, and long-time design critic for the New York Times.
Five international design leaders were recognized as Fellows of IFI (FoIFI), who as individuals have displayed outstanding international achievements within the Interior Architecture/Design discipline.
Sebastiano Raneri (Italy) was awarded for his major contribution to development of the global Interiors profession, both in his career as a successful practitioner, exemplary educator, international design commentator, and instrumental leader in the design communities of IFI and the Associazione Italiana Progettisti d’Interni (AIPi). His personal interest in fostering constructive professional dialogue has and continues to build the profession worldwide.
Julio Cesar Chavez Espino (Mexico), Architect and Founder of the Sociedad Mexicana de Interioristas (SMI) was recognized for his work championing the Interiors profession in Mexico and internationally over the past 36 years, as a design leader, cultural icon, educator and student advocate.
The immense local, regional and international contribution of IDr Mohamad Faisal Ghazali (Malalysia) was acknowledged, who has also been actively involved with international activities through IFI for over three decades.
Dr. Jooyun Kim (Korea), professor of Interior Architecture/Design at Hongik University in Seoul, South Korea, was recognized for his contributions across professional practice, thought leadership and design advocacy, that position him as a significant design leader for the wider Asia region.
Susan Szenasy (USA), former Director of Design Innovation and long-time Editor in Chief of Metropolis Magazine, was awarded for her exemplary work with design thought leadership and ongoing commitment to informed dialogue, which has influenced and guided generations of design professionals.
IFI GAP Jury Chairman and immediate Past-President of IFI, Steve Leung said, “We are proud to award these remarkable individuals, who have forever changed the discipline through their passion, commitment and brilliance. They truly embody the spirit and ambition of IFI GAP’s highest honors, through their record of exceptional impact to the field of Interior Architecture/Design. Their work represents an undeniable contribution to the shaping of Interiors, which we are certain will leave a mark for many generations to come.”