London 2012: Olympic torch wins design award

Design Museum curator Ria Hawthorn on the London 2012 Olympic torch

The creative team behind the London Olympic torch has won the prestigious Design of the Year award 2012.

The aluminium torch was created by UK design studio, Barber Osgerby. It is perforated with 8,000 holes, each representing one of the torchbearers.

The winner was chosen from 89 entries and was presented at an awards ceremony at London's Design Museum, which organises the annual event.

Another Olympic design triumphed in the architecture category - the Velodrome.

The Olympic torch relay will run for 70 days ahead of the London 2012 Olympics.

It will journey across the UK, taking in places such as Wells Cathedral, Cardiff Castle, Giant's Causeway, Forth Rail Bridge, York Minster, Blackpool Tower and Windsor Castle.

Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic said the torch was "a triumph of symbolism and beauty".

He added that it "demonstrates how design can celebrate traditional qualities in a modern manner".

However the design has split critics and the public.

Times columnist Carol Midgeley defended the design: "I think it's rather elegant, actually."

London 2012 - One extraordinary year

London 2012 One extraordinary year graphic

But the Daily Telegraph asked readers to vote on whether it most resembled a torch, cheese grater, cigarette holder or wastepaper bin.

The fashion award went to Issey Miyake's 132.5 collection.

Recent RCA graduate Kihyun Kim won the furniture prize for his balsa wood 1.3 Chair.

The 2012 Olympic Torch, along with the other shortlisted designs, is on display at the Design Museum until 4 July.

On the Design Awards jury were newspaper proprietor Evgeny Lebedev, Wallpaper editor Henrietta Thompson, Dutch designer Hella Jongerious and chairman of the Canary Wharf group, Sir George Iacobescu.

The panel was chaired by designer Ilse Crawford.

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