The four finalists of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz Design Award by Broadsheet have been announced! Open to all design members of the Australian public, the brief called for submissions that enhanced the dining experience - either indoors or outdoors. The winner, to be announced 13th December, will work with yours truly to develop their design from the prototype stage through to production. The finished product will be subsequently added to our design collection and offered for sale nationwide in March 2017. 

With over 140 entries, judging recently took place with Cult Founder Richard Munao, Nick Shelton of Broadsheet, representatives from Mercedes-Benz Australia and design mentors Adam Goodrum and George Livissianis present.


Designers from a variety of categories – furniture, lighting, crockery, utensils or wall-hangings – were invited to submit their ideas. After hours spent deliberating over what was a wealth of creativity and talent, we were able to together shortlist four finalists including Dan Layden, Tom Fereday, John Grant and Rene Linssen. These finalists were then invited to a mentorship workshop hosted at the Cult Sydney Showroom. 


Melbourne designer John Grant has sought to bring the beauty of high-end Japanese kitchen design to his bamboo cutlery designed for everyday use. Dan Layden's minimalist HU Chair, which can be produced as a one-or-two seater, has been celebrated for its versatility. "I loved the detailing and the use of wicker, timber and upholstery as materials,” says Munao of Layden’s entry. “It is quite a beautiful, considered chair. You can easily imagine those chairs in a dining room or in a commercial environment." Canberra designer Rene Linssen has been shortlisted for his Sola versatile all-weather multi-use table design made from powder coated steel, while last but not least, Tom Fereday presents the Sia Chair; a slim dining chair with an adjustable backrest. 


With the winner revealed in less than two weeks, stay tuned for who will be crowned Australia’s hottest design talent and the latest name to be added to Cult's legacy designer portfolio.


In the meantime, here we introduce you to the finalists and their shortlisted designs, including imagery from our mentorship workshop session hosted at the Cult Sydney Showroom. 

HU Chair by Dan Layden

A minimalist one-or-two seat timber dining chair. Read more about Dan Layden and his HU Chair here








Bamboo Flatware by John Grant 

Melbourne designer John Grant has sought to bring the beauty of high-end Japanese kitchen to cutlery designed for everyday use. Read more about John Grant and his Bamboo Flatware here







Sola Outdoor Coffee Table by Rene Linssen

An all-weather multi-use piece made from powder coated steel. Read more about Rene Linssen and his Sola Table here








Sia Chair by Tom Fereday 

Following his mission to create the perfect dining chair, Tom Fereday presents Sia; a slim chair with an adjustable backrest. Read more about Tom Fereday and his Sia Chair here







The Mercedes-Benz Design Award winner will be announced at the Mercedes me Store in Melbourne December 13. Photography by Rohan Thomson, Kimberley Low & Jake Roden.