Shelves that conceal a rollable screen, a table that doubles as a TV and an immersive baby crib are among the designs that have been shortlisted in Dezeen and LG Display's OLEDs Go! competition, which called for creative uses for OLED technology.
Over 200 entrants from more than 50 countries around the world entered the contest, which challenged participants to create beautiful and innovative designs using OLED technology.
OLED stands for organic light-emitting diode and is typically used for digital displays on products such as televisions and smartphones. Entrants had to come up with designs that would make the most of OLED's key qualities, such as its lightness and thinness, its flexibility and its transparency.
Twenty designs have now been shortlisted and are in the running for a share of the €46,000 prize pot.
Five finalists, selected by the jury from the shortlist, will be announced in April, with the overall winner revealed in May.
The €46,000 will be divided among the top five finalists, with the winner receiving €15,000, the runner-up €10,000, and the remaining three finalists receiving €7,000 each.
The shortlisted entries are listed below in the order in which they were received.
TVBLE by Dunsol Ko
Seoul, South Korea
Dunsol Ko's design is a table with an OLED top that tilts at the push of a button so that it can be viewed like a television. It is imagined in dining table and coffee table sizes, both with speakers embedded in the legs providing omnidirectional sound.
With a frame made of glue-laminated timber, TVBLE is robust enough to support the tilting OLED screen while also bringing the warmth of wood into the interior space.
"One of the great advantages of having TVBLE is that the living space can transform effortlessly into a dining space, and vice versa," said Ko.
"It's for the people who are looking for an ideal balance between form and function at home. You can invite friends to hang out around the TVBLE for drinks and tilt the screen to sit back and watch your favourite show together or FaceTime your family using the high-resolution camera."
UcmaG by Sedat Özer
OLED televisions are much lighter than older display technologies. So why do we still mount them to the wall or use the same TV stands? Sedat Özer proposes a minimalist design where the screen hangs from the end of a metal tube, with the other end anchored to a counterweight.
The screen is suspended in the air like "a fish hanging on a fishing line", and can be easily rotated and angled.
"OLED is light — why don't we emphasise this lightness?" said Özer. "This idea led to the birth of a new typology. The TV is suspended in the air and has no contact with the ground. It can rotate and angle around itself. This provides ease of use and flexibility to the user."
Folio by Kevin Chiam
Kevin Chiam has taken advantage of the flexibility of OLED technology to design a portable screen that can be carried like a folio bag. The design features a flexible 32-inch screen with a leather back and aluminium arms at either end that snap together magnetically to create a handle for carrying.
Chiam sees nomadic users enjoying the product for playing video games and also as a way to display digital artwork or information. Folio is modular in design so it can be easily updated with new components as technology and culture evolve.
"Folio is fundamentally crafted for millennial, digital nomads who work remotely, are always on the move and find joy in exploring new landscapes and rituals, at home and at work," said Chiam.
Scroll by Richard Bone and Jisu Yun of Studio Boo Boon
With a form inspired by an unravelled scroll, Richard Bone and Jisu Yun's design is meant to make the TV blend into the home when it is not being used, by combining a transparent OLED screen with a shelf for placing objects.
Imagined in a subtle colour palette of anodised white, green or sand, Scroll can be either hung or leant against the wall.
"When switched on, a TV can often dominate the space in the room, but when off this large space is wasted and unusable," said the designers, who together run Studio Boo Boon.
"When scroll is turned off, the transparent OLED blends into the background, leaving only the personalised display shelf."
Trestle by Richard Bone and Jisu Yun of Studio Boo Boon
A second shortlisted entry from Richard Bone and Jisu Yun, Trestle contains a flexible rollable OLED display hidden within a wooden shelf. There are four items of different sizes within the collection – three smaller freestanding models, and a three-shelf version designed to lean against the wall.
Named after and inspired by the trestle legs of a table, the product is designed for people who want to be able to adapt their interior spaces for multiple uses, lifestyles and emotions.
"The design, a step change from the traditional format of TVs currently available on the market, is designed to emphasise the thin and light OLED technology," said the designers.
"No longer do we have a heavy box hiding the technical components but a visually light frame and a series of wooden shelves."
Signal by Jean-Michel Rochette
Jean-Michel Rochette has embraced physical interaction with the design of Signal. Users have to manually open the device like a book to unveil the foldable OLED screen inside and watch TV.
When they close it, they can enjoy the smaller, textile-wrapped object as a Bluetooth speaker and ambient light.
"Signal is inspired by the concept of a book; you have to open it to discover what it is all about," said Rochette.
"It can enhance people's lives by not being the focal point of a room like many TV are today and by offering three modes that offer unseen versatility to the user."
O.ledsgo.VEN by Dries Laperre and Laura Willems of Surplace
With this design, the screen can provide cooking instructions, feedback about the food in the oven, safety warnings, weather reports, calendars, pinboards, entertainment and more. It enables the kitchen to be the real hub of the home.
"This oven becomes a smart product, linked to the Internet of Things, and ready for so many other possible, future-oriented ways of use: do you want to show your cooking skills immediately on Instagram, control the oven via smartphone, or switch to voice-controlled commands? The possibilities go very far," said the designers.
Flag.R by Doyeon Shin
Seoul, South Korea
Doyeon Shin made use of the flexibility of OLED screens to create a TV that conceals the screen within a decorative object. Flag.R can be used in three main configurations: with its screen fully unrolled into a television, completely hidden away as a speaker, and with the screen one-fifth exposed as a playlist display.
It has a powder-coated metal base and a wood body, which would be available in a range of colours.
"The thinness and lightness of the OLED leaves the dull traditional stand behind to enable a flag-like form factor, which expands the mobility and interior placement possibilities," said Shin.
Wonderful World by Huan Khoo
Huan Khoo's design is an OLED canopy that can be fitted to any crib via a flexible composite wood arch, providing a range of soothing or educational experiences for babies.
OLED technology doesn't emit much heat, so the set-up is safe for babies, and when the child outgrows it, Khoo recommends using the canopy for a pet instead.
"In the morning, the baby could be woken up by glowing sunlight followed by playtime with learning simple alphabets or numbers with graphics," said Khoo.
"At night, a soothing bedtime story cartoon could be played, or starry lights to accompany the baby to sleep."
Virage by Camille Paillard and Romain Voulet of CP–RV
Camille Paillard and Romain Voulet, who work together as the studio CV–RV, made use of the flexibility of OLED technology to create an adaptable display that acts as a room divider, ambient light and wraparound screen.
With slim aluminium slats on the rear and rubber edges on the top and bottom, it can be shaped into various forms and even fully rolled up for easy storage. The designers see it as particularly suited to dividing up a large open-plan house or loft.
"Virage can be formed in many ways: as a room divider to separate your living spaces, between your dining table and your sofa for example," said the designers.
"It is also a warm lighting surface for a peaceful reading moment, and when evening comes, Virage becomes the perfect cinema screen, a large viewing display that curves around for everybody to enjoy a great family gathering."
Monolith by André Cardoso, João Almeida and Joel Azevedo
Packing a vast 88-inch screen, Monolith is designed for the contemporary living room and can provide ambient light from an opening in the top when the TV is not in use.
"With straight lines, large satin metal surfaces and the bottom third covered in fabric, this slim and abstract rectangle blends with the surroundings and it's an art piece by itself," said the design team.
ON&ON by Romain Voulet and Camille Paillard of CP–RV
In their second shortlisted design, Romain Voulet and Camille Paillard combine the digital and the analogue, proposing a transparent OLED TV that doubles as a picture frame.
ON&ON has a 35-inch transparent OLED panel, a perspex backing and a plastic frame. Two quick-release holders in the frame can be removed in order to slide a poster, photo or any other flat object behind the transparent display – making it a decorative object that requires no energy consumption when it is not being used as a TV.
As soon as the TV is turned on, the display ceases to be transparent, allowing it to be watched like a normal TV.
"The TV is not the centrepiece of your living room anymore," said the designers.
"People are watching less and less television on a traditional screen. However, the new LG transparent OLED panel technology might offer a good opportunity to replace the black screen, and with the ON&ON display your TV will always have something interesting to show you."
Console by Gianfranco Vasselli
Gianfranco Vasselli's design is a wooden shelf designed to sit over the head of a bed like a canopy, with an OLED screen built into the underside of the platform.
The designer wanted to recognise the reality that many people are interacting with screens and devices right up until they go to sleep, while proposing a potentially healthier way for them to do so. While lying down, they could watch video, browse social media, view their sleep data or enjoy one of the light settings.
"The benefits Console gives its users are a comfortable position from which to use it and no excessive exposure to lighting stress," said Vasselli.
Smart Airport Luggage Cart by Sungjik Kim
New York, USA
Sungjik Kim has designed a transparent OLED panel with a touchscreen that can be retrofitted to airport luggage carts to give them a smart update.
With the Smart Airport Luggage Cart, users could potentially skip the check-in booth and get their boarding information directly from the cart. It could also help them navigate the airport.
"When people are in a vast airport, they experience a messy and complicated situation like looking for directions, locations and events," said Kim.
"The smart cart helps people find their way and purpose easily through the LG transparent OLED display."
Diode by Mina Morcos
Mina Morcos's design is a wall-mounted digital reel-to-reel tape recorder and speaker. The transparent OLED touchscreen overlaid on top has a dual purpose — it eliminates the need for input buttons and dials, giving it a cleaner appearance, and it serves as a display for additional content.
Progress circles, menu icons, music visualisations, artwork and lyrics are among the possible options that could be shown.
"Diode is intended for the high-end consumer market," said Morcos. "It was designed for both audiophiles that have become accustomed to digital technology and expect products to be intuitive, as well as those that are nostalgic for the intimacy and tangibility of analogue experiences."
LG Trollie by YunChik Lee and Bomi Kim
Seoul, South Korea
YunChik Lee and Bomi Kim designed the LG Trollie for the Covid era — a time when people are living more of their lives within their own homes. The product is meant to be easily moved from room-to-room, and to allow the light OLED screen to be easily hung at different heights and in different orientations to complement tasks like home workouts or cooking.
It is made for self-assembly and finished in soft-coloured plastic for fun and warmth.
"Hanging a light, thin OLED screen on the tube of the trolley (using a magnetic connection), as if hanging on clothes or towels, you can freely use the product for various purposes and in different ways through other tubes or provided baskets," said the designers.
Lily by Sinan Anayurt
Sinan Anayurt proposes using an OLED screen for one dedicated purpose – to grow virtual plants in a decorative object.
Lily is intended for environments such as offices, or wherever there might not be enough steady sunlight for real plants. Plants for display are chosen through an accompanying app.
"Taking its inspiration from the impressive visuals of the permeable screen technology, Lily aims to be a customisable vase for botanic enthusiasts, especially in areas that are not exposed to sunlight and unsuitable for growing plants," said Anayurt.
Glide by Emilios Farrington-Arnas and André Cardoso
Emilios Farrington-Arnas teamed up with André Cardoso to design a carryall bag with a 27-inch foldable OLED screen as its lid. The bag programmed to display a personalised artwork on the go, but could also be used to screen a presentation or movie.
When fully opened and plugged in, it makes a good complementary screen for work. The bag has a brushed anodised aluminium alloy exterior, fabric interior and a strap that references Dieter Rams' T24 portable radio design.
"The idea was to make the most of OLED panels' extreme lightness and thinness, but also to highlight its surprising and ingenious flexibility," said the designers.
"It can be worn both to work and to go out as a fashionable yet practical companion, basically throughout the entire day."
Railo by Liron Gino and Niv Cohen
Tel Aviv, Israel
Railo displays the patient's medical information for staff, while enabling the patient to watch whatever entertainment they choose. Its plastic base is designed to fit around variously sized bed railings so that it can be used in a variety of hospitals, care homes, or a patient's own home.
"Our approach, which features a lightweight, retractable screen attached to the railing of a patient's bed, aims to overcome the discomfort and clutter associated with the currently existing solutions, and in doing so, to also save precious floor and wall space," said Gino.
OLED TV XYZ by JangHyeok Choi and Kanghyeon Won
Anseong-si, South Korea
JangHyeok Choi and Kanghyeon Won's design embeds a rollable OLED screen within a piece of furniture that is meant to look good in the home even when the display is not in use.
The name comes from the fact that it has something to cater to each of generations X, Y and Z, including portrait mode for Gen Z's home training and social media.
"For Generation Y, we can roll the screen at various angles to create a unique computer workspace in the world," said Choi. "Various modes for hobby activities, such as piano mode as well as computer mode, make the user's imagination real."
OLEDs Go! is a partnership between Dezeen and LG Display. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here.