Alexandra Lange
Architecture & design critic

Mask Up! It’s the 2020 Architecture and Design Awards

By Mark Lamster & Alexandra Lange

It has been a year, people. COVID-19. Economic collapse. Political madness. Social unrest. Fire. Mank. Through it all, we’ve been keeping tabs, marking down who’s been naughty and who’s been nice, so we can bring you, for the 11th consecutive year — !!! — our annual architecture and design awards.

With no further ado, here’s what we’ll remember from this year to forget:

Design of the Year: The mask. Cotton, silk, knit, disposable, novelty, high fashion, political, N95. Whichever option you have chosen — and you better have chosen one — no human-made object has had more impact on our lives in 2020.
Chemosphere Prize: To Dua Lipa, who had us levitating with her John Lautner call out on the title track of our favorite album of the year, Future Nostalgia.

Playskool Badge of Dishonor: Trump’s itty-bitty widdle desk. It should have been colored plastic, for design consistency, but as with all else in his benighted administration, it wasn’t thought through.

Richard Scarry Vision Award: Governor Andrew Cuomo’s bizarro kiddie art “New York Tough” COVID poster left us speechless.