Along with a cash prize, we attached several symbols of success to the Henry van de Velde Awards, such as a silver trophy and a calligraphic certificate. We wanted them to emphasise the awards’ prestige. Each of the trophies is used for five years. The first one was designed by Siegfried De Buck, whose works became icons of Belgian silversmithing. He designed a walking stick in silver and precious wood. The next trophy, designed by Nedda El-Asmar, consisted of five silver beakers that nest inside each other. The third one was designed by David Huycke. He created a spherical calyx. Helena Schepens, one of our youngest precious metal smiths, is now the fourth talented designer to create and produce the trophy for us. It is a vase constructed from silver slats linked together.
The certificate had to be calligraphic to illustrate, as does the trophy, the importance of the craft aspect. The first calligrapher was Bert Binneweg, the second was Brody Neuenschwander, the Texan from Bruges. This year Brody is again doing the calligraphy for the certificates that the winners take home with them. The cash prizes for the Henry van de Velde Lifetime Achievement, Company and Young Talent awards are EUR 5,000. The winner of the Public award receives EUR 2,500.
Johan Valcke was appointed director of Design Flanders in 1992. In that function he founded the Henry van de Velde Awards. He also founded the Design Flanders Gallery, the Triennials for Design and established the design magazine Kwintessens. He was elected to the Board of WCC-Europe and the Board of BEDA. Today, he remains active in the sounding board group for Design Museum Gent, the general assembly of HISK Gent and the purchasing committee of DIVA Antwerp. In 2018 he opened his gallery VALCKE Art Gallery.