Walter de Silva, Volkswagen Design’s boss, was given the ADI “Compasso d’Oro” (Golden Compass) Award for his lifetime achievements in Rome. The Compasso d’Oro Career Award is one of the most distinguished Italian design prizes.
Both Italian and international personalities are honored for their excellent services in the field of design, research, teaching, production and distribution. Upon receiving the award, de Silva was referred to by the international expert panel of judges as an “undisputed protagonist of Italian design” throughout his 40-year career.
He was awarded before an audience composed of dignitaries, the members of ADI (Italian Association of Industrial Design), the Fondazione ADI, the Fondazione Valore Italia, some chosen guests, and the press.
This is the 22nd time that the award has been given; the first took place in 1954. In addition, prizes were also handed out to various individual design objects whose quality has the potential to boost the awareness for Italian industrial design.
This year marks the 150th anniversary celebration of Italian unification. Since 2007, de Silva had served as the Head of Volkswagen Design where he oversees the design of all brands.
He has received several design awards in the past, including the “Design Prize of the Federal Republic of Germany” in February 2010 for the Audi A5. This is the highest official design award in Germany.