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Dezeen Awards 2020 trophies by Atelier NL are crafted from wood salvaged from London trees

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Dutch design studio Atelier NL has used wood from London street trees to create this year’s Dezeen Awards trophies, which will be awarded in a series of video shows next week.

The d-shaped trophies are crafted from hardwood salvaged from diseased or unsafe trees that would otherwise be chipped or burned.

The design is based on the brick trophies that Atelier NL’s Nadine Sterk and Lonny van Ryswyck designed for the first Dezeen Awards ceremony in 2018.

This year, the Dutch duo had to come up with a new design since the brick factory that produced the original trophies was forced to close down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Lately we have been working a lot with city wood, so we went to search for local wood in London,” said Sterk. “We found this beautiful workshop called Saunders Seasonings, which uses the wood from old city trees.”

Sawing planks at Saunders Seasonings
The timber comes from planks cut from London street trees

Saunders Seasonings was founded two years ago by Bruce Saunders, a London resident who was surprised to discover that the majority of old trees felled in the city are incinerated.

The workshop takes unwanted lumber from felled plane, oak, ash and elm trees and saws it into planks that it sells from its workshop in Walthamstow, east London.

Saunders worked in collaboration with design and maker studio Azmy Anything to produce 45 trophies for Dezeen Awards 2020, following blueprints supplied by Atelier NL.

Dezeen Awards 2020 trophy by Atelier NL
The Dezeen Awards logo is cut with a CNC mill

The designers wanted the new trophies to showcase the natural beauty of the wood in the same way that the previous brick design celebrated the rough, hand-formed yellow London clay.

The wooden trophies are hand-sawn and finished, with the Dezeen Awards logo milled using a CNC machine and the details of the winner engraved by laser.

“We used different types of wood-working techniques, and wanted to keep the different characters of the wood visible,” says Sterk.

“When you have this piece of wood in your hands you can really feel the emotion of the life of this tree,” adds Van Ryswyck.

Dezeen Awards 2018 trophy by Atelier NL
Atelier NL’s original Dezeen Awards trophies were crafted in a brick factory

The winners of the trophies will be announced in a series of three Dezeen Awards 202 Shows that will be broadcast from 23 to 25 November.

Hosted by BBC Radio London presenter and poet LionHeart, the shows will start at 4:00pm each day. The architecture categories will be announced on Monday 23 November, the interior categories on Tuesday 24 November, and the design categories on Wednesday 25 November.

Trophies will be shipped out to all winners following the Dezeen Awards 2020 Shows.

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