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 Thursday, 9 January, 2003, 11:52 GMT
Computer gurus up for design award
Screenshot from Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
The Grand Theft Auto video game "borders on art"
Designers of a hit computer game, jewellery, chandeliers and Apple computers make up the shortlist for the new Designer of the Year award.

The makers of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, a best-selling video game that "borders on art", according to one critic, but which has also been criticised for its violence, are among the nominees.

The four nominees have all made fantastic contributions to the world of design

Paul Smith
Juror and designer
Also nominated is Apple iMac and iPod chief designer Jonathan Ive, who has earned the nickname of the "Armani of Apple".

Completing the nominations are jewellery designer Solange Azagury-Partridge and Dutch product designer Tord Boontje for limited edition chandeliers.

They are in the running for the inaugural award, launched by London's Design Museum, with the winner of the 25,000 prize due to be announced in June.

Apple iMac
Apple iMac: Credited with revolutionising computer design
The jurors include fashion guru Paul Smith, who said: "The four nominees have all made fantastic contributions to the world of design. And their work in 2002 was exceptional."

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, a Playstation 2 game in which players take the role of a Miami gangster, was made by Rockstar Games.

It became the fastest-selling video game in UK sales history when it was released in November.

But it has come under fire for its storyline, which sees the main character stealing cars, dishing out violence, hiring prostitutes and hijacking police cars.

Designing hardware rather than software, London-born Jonathan Ive is Apple's vice president of industrial design and has been credited with revolutionising the appearance of computers.

Tord Boontje's floral patterned Wednesday Light
Tord Boontje's floral patterned Wednesday Light
The New York Times said he was "perhaps the most influential designer in the computer world".

Tord Boontje, who studied at the Royal College of Art in London, is nominated for his Blossom chandelier for Swarovski, and has also worked for Dartington Crystal and Habitat.

The final nominee, Solange Azagury-Partridge, went into jewellery design after making her own engagement ring, and is now creative director of Boucheron.

See also:

08 Nov 02 | Technology
12 Nov 02 | Technology
18 Jan 02 | Newsmakers
30 Nov 01 | New Media
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