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Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

André Ricard

André Richard

‘He has touched on so many aspects of our lives through his designs.’

DesignEuropa Awards jury.

André Ricard’s work is part of the landscape of our daily lives, a reference point for Spanish – and European – design, as well as an inspiration for generations of designers.

Some of the designs he created decades ago are still being produced today and he will be forever associated with the 1992 Barcelona Olympic torch which he designed at the peak of his extraordinary career.

The early years

Born in Barcelona in 1929, his parents were determined for him to join the family business and packed him off to London for work experience. There, he visited the Festival of Britain exhibition in 1951 where he was captivated by the designs on display. On his return to Spain at the age of 22, he knew what direction his life would take. By 1959 he was ready to open his own design studio in Barcelona, and designed a washing machine for his first client.

During the 1960s he cemented his reputation with designs in chinaware for Porcelanas Bidasoa and fragrance bottles for Puig. His 1968 design for the Agua Brava bottle remains unchanged to this day.

André Richard

His simple Copenhagen ashtray, created in 1965, can be called a symbol of the 1960s, and is still in production and sold all over the world. The ice tongs he designed in 1964 are still being produced and sold today. The Tatu lamp, designed in 1972, looks as modern now as it did back then. His designs, quite simply, never go out of fashion.

Professional growth

As his reputation grew, so did his list of clients, and his clean, elegant designs became famous around the world. From coffee makers for Gaggia, to an electric juicer and a hand mixer for Moulinex. Everything, in fact, from a humble laundry basket to the giant hanging lights that have graced the Reina Sofía National Museum Art Centre in Madrid for decades.

André Richard

In 1992, the Olympics came to Spain and Ricard threw himself into creating the Olympic torch. His design shone a light on his home city of Barcelona and introduced his work to an even wider audience. In 1993, he designed the cauldron for the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, and in 2012, he was also asked to design the ‘handover’ baton that symbolised the passing of the Games from London to Rio de Janeiro.

His work rate has barely slowed in the last few decades, with designs for watches for Milus, Baume & Mercier, and Pierre Junod (the 1995 ‘Ricard’ watch for Junod is a collector’s item today), as well as urban furniture like lampposts, litter bins and post boxes.

Support for design communities

Aside from his personal design work, Ricard has made a significant contribution to supporting the wider design community. In 1960 he became a founder of ADI-FAD, the Spanish designers’ professional body, and later on its president. He is also a former vice-president of ICSID, which is now known as the World Design Organization.

He was a Member of the Faculty of the Art Centre Europe (Switzerland), Head of Department of Product Design in the Barcelona Eina design school as well as Patron of its Foundation and President of the NGO ‘Design for the World’. In 2000 he was elected member of the Barcelona’s Real Acadèmia de Ciències i Arts. He has been recognised with Spain’s National Design Award, the Sant Jordi Cross from the Catalan government in Spain, the Olympic Order from the International Olympic Committee, the Gold Medal for Artistic Merit from the city of Barcelona and is both Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres and Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur in France.

André Richard

At 92, he continues working and creating. The clean elegance of industrial designer André Ricard’s work has greatly contributed to the longevity of his creations, and will continue to shape the world of design for generations to come.


All images © André Ricard

Info icon The images on this page were provided by the finalists / lifetime achievement winner for communication purposes only. They are not meant to reflect the graphical representation requirements of registered Community designs. The graphical representation requirements for the purposes of registration of Community designs can be consulted at the EUIPO design guidelines.

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