What went on behind closed doors at the judging sessions for the Frame Awards categories? Which phrases uttered on stage became instant classics? We’ve picked a selection of our favourite utterances, from the death of architectural ego to the fact that heaven is an (unexpected) place on Earth.

‘Nonpermanent spaces represent the future of hospitality.’

Architect Werner Aisslinger during the voting process for the bar of the year

‘Gentle Monster has created a buzz in a way that no other brand has done before – a reason for people to get off the couch and visit a sunglasses store.’

Nike’s design director of retail environments, Tim Rupp, while selecting the single-brand store of the year

‘Can’t we fight that? Offices are not factories!’

Sevil Peach during the selection of the large office of the year


‘It’s the definition of a pop-up: it even travels in its own packaging.’

Retail designer Jeff Kindleysides praises the pop-up store of the year

‘Life is stressful in China; that’s why you need spaces where there is nothing, to empty your mind.’

Architect Peter Ippolito explaining his vote for the hotel of the year

‘There is a new kind of architecture that represents the end of the ego of the architect, producing monuments to himself.’

Designer Paola Navone serves some tea after the jury members picked the co-living complex of the year

‘Perhaps it’s professional corruption, but I like the message of staging something low-tech, something human.’

Moment Factory’s Sakchin Bessette humbling conclusion after choosing the set design of the year

‘When I see designers fiddling around with our futures, they don’t yet see the consequences – that’s a lack of imagination.’

Curator Matylda Krzykowski pulled no punches in the discussion session for the innovation award

‘Form follows funding.’

HKS team members during their presentation of what eventually became the winner of the social award, the Kachumbala Maternity Ward

‘I didn’t know paradise was in Holland!’

Philippe Starck accepting his Lifetime Achievement Award

See the full list of winners of the 2019 Frame Awards here.