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DL Dispatch: 3 Competitions to Get Your Work Noticed!

competitions Toronto

Industry info, fresh from our inbox. Where to submit your projects and ideas to get some well-deserved recognition – and cash

Looking for your big break? The three competitions below all promise some degree of design world fame and fortune.


Twenty + Change: Next Generation
Led by architects Heather Dubbeldam and Lola Sheppard, this organization curates an annual architecture exhibition and book showcasing work by talented new firms from across the country. Past winners have been a who’s who of today’s most influential architects, including Williamson ChongDenegri Bessai Studio, and superkül inc. The hunt is on for 2015’s selection of innovative projects by emerging Canadian design practices.

Who can submit: Canadian firms or individuals practicing for less than 10 years. Entrants must have one built project under their belts – either completed or under construction.
What to submit: A maximum of four projects (completed or conceptual), each showcased on one or two 30×30″ panels submitted as PDF files. 10 high-resolution images and a 300 word project description must be submitted as well. Also required: a 250 word practice profile describing your firm.
Fee: $60 per project.
Judges: The curatorial committee includes architects (Sasa Radulovic, a partner at Winnipeg’s 5468796 Architecture Inc.), critics (regular Designlines contributor Alex Bozikovic), and academics (Dalhousie University School of Architecture director Diogo Burnay).
Prize: Projects selected by the curatorial committee will be featured in an exhibition that travels the country and collected in a book.
Deadline: June 3.


2015 NXT City Prize

This annual competition encourages young urbanites to imagine new possibilities for Toronto’s public spaces. Last year’s winner, Richard Valenzona, reimagined the stretch of Yonge between Queen and College as a curb-less road with expanded sidewalks and is currently translating his idea into a formal proposal. This year’s theme – “Opportunity” – promotes similarly bold-but-feasible visions for the city.

Who can submit: Canadians under 35. Entrants can submit individually, or in teams of up to four people.
What to submit: Proposals should be communicated by either a 90-second video or an 11″x17″ PDF panel. Entrants can also opt to submit both.
Fee: $50. Students receive a 50% discount, and those under 18 can enter for free.
Judges: The jury includes Toronto’s Chief Planner, Jennifer Keesmaat, as well as Shauny Levy, president of Design Exchange, and Bruce Mau Design CEO Hunter Tura.
Prize: The first-place winner receives $5,000, plus a chance to work with the city and local organizations to potentially implement their idea.
Deadline: July 31.


Emerging Designer Competition

Design Exchange and RBC Foundation are looking to find the hottest up-and-coming talent across all design disciplines. Web designers, landscape architects and the fashion crowd are all invited to demonstrate how they’re set to shake up the design world.

Who can submit: Canadian designers between the ages of 18 and 35.
What to submit: A cover letter, a digital portfolio, a CV and two reference letters. AKA: standard job application requirements.
Fee: Free.
Judges: The cross-disciplinary panel includes Umbra co-founder Paul Rowan; Allan Guinan, a principal at interior design firm Figure 3; plus Facebook’s Global Head of Vertical Strategy, Jordan Banks.
Prize: The first-place winner receives $10,000. A curatorial mentor will assist with developing an exhibition to run at Design Exchange during Toronto’s 2016 Design Week. Best of category winners receive $1,000, while an awards publication will collect all winners and honourable mentions.
Deadline: Applicants must register by August 1; submissions are due August 15.

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