If you ask Werner Aisslinger about the future of design, he will tell you the stylish minimalism of the last decade, with its innovation based purely upon shape, will morph into a sophisticated use of new materials and technologies. “Historically exciting, visionary and pioneering designs have always rested on the transformation of materials and technology into a new context,” says the winner of the 2014 A&W (Architektur & Wohnen) Designer of the Year Award.

We would expect nothing less of the Berlin-based visionary, who created the Tree Series for Spanish manufacturer B.lux, which Global Lighting distributes in North America, because innovation based upon form and the use of new materials has always been a prominent hallmark of the designer’s career. The avant-garde application of materials, such as polyurethane foam, is another move Aisslinger is known to make. This pioneer of furniture design has collaborated with a number of lauded brands, including Capellini, Porro and Vitra. Many of his designs have garnered prestigious awards, such as the A&W nod, the Compasso d’Oro in Milan, and a Red Dot Award.