Olympic torch wins UK Design of the Year 2012 award

LONDON (Reuters) - The designers of London's Olympic torch have won the Design of the Year 2012 award, organizers announced on Tuesday.

London studio Barber Osgerby, a joint venture between Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby, was chosen from a field of 89 entries, and honored at a ceremony at London's Design Museum.

"Nothing is harder to get right than designing for the Olympics," said Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic. "The lightness and simplicity of Barber Osgerby's Olympic Torch does just that."

The torch is made of aluminum and perforated with 8,000 circular holes, each representing a single carrier of the torch as it makes its way to the opening ceremony in London on July 27.

The holes also act to reduce the weight of the torch and prevent heat from the flame being conducted to the bearer's hand, the Design Museum said.

Also unveiled on Tuesday were the Design of the Year category winners:

- Architecture Award 2012: London 2012 Velodrome/Hopkins Architects

- Digital Award 2012: Microsoft Kinect and Kinect SDK/Microsoft Games Studios, Microsoft Research and Xbox

- Fashion Award 2012: 132 5. ISSEY MIYAKE/Miyake Design Studio

- Furniture Award 2012: 1.3 Chair, Balsa Furniture/Kihyun Kim

- Graphics Award 2012: Nokia Pure Font/Dalton Maag

- Product Award 2012: The London 2012 Olympic Torch/Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby

- Transport Award 2012: Re-design for Emergency Ambulance/Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design and Vehicle Design Department, Royal College of Art.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato)