Yinka Ilori and Es Devlin design two Brit Award trophies: one to keep, and one to give away
Inspired by the acts of kindness seen during the pandemic, winners will receive their own trophy and “the agency to award another” to someone they deem deserving.
- Jenny Brewer
- 29 April 2021
- Reading Time
- 2 minute read
The Brit Awards 2021 trophy designs by Yinka Ilori and Es Devlin have been revealed, with a twist to proceedings this year that will allow winners to give away an award to someone else. The idea, conceived by the designers themselves, will see each Brit Award recipient prized with two trophies – a regular sized one designed by Ilori and a smaller one by Devlin. The smaller is intended for anyone the winner deems worthy, perhaps a family member, friend, neighbour or colleague, or a fellow artist or key worker.
“Yinka and I thought that the best award that one could receive would be agency to award another,” Devlin told Helen Lamont for the Brit Awards Show Programme. “Each recipient is invited to award the second trophy to someone they consider worthy – it might be recognition – or it might be someone that does something entirely unrelated to music.”
“The idea came from the experience of lockdown,” Ilori says, “where your neighbour you’ve lived beside for six years and never say hello to suddenly gave you flowers, foods, acts of kindness. I wanted to capture that... I would describe it as two artists from different disciplines, different inspirations, coming together to design a trophy based around the idea of giving something back – acts of kindness.”
Ilori’s trophy features his distinctive, vibrantly coloured patterns inspired by his Nigerian heritage, an aesthetic for which he has become widely known and commissioned, adorning everything from large-scale installations to magazine covers. He describes the statuette design as “an explosion of colour… a nod to my aesthetic, based around my storytelling theme”. Devlin’s trophy features a mirrored surface engraved with what she describes as a “maze pattern that celebrates the paths many of those working within the creative industries have had to tread in order to progress through this challenging year”.
Ilori and Devlin follow in the footsteps of past Brit Award trophy designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Philip Treacy, Tracey Emin, Anish Kapoor, Zaha Hadid and David Adjaye.
The Brit Awards take place on 11 May 2021.
Yinka Ilori and Es Devlin: Brit Awards trophies (Copyright © Brits, 2021)