Walter de Silva with the 2007 Volkswagen up! Concept.


 Wolfsburg/Rome, 13 July 2011 – The Head of Volkswagen Design accepted the ADI “Compasso d’Oro” (Golden Compass) Award for his lifetime achievements in Rome yesterday. The award is considered one of the most renowned Italian design prizes.

The international expert panel of judges described de Silva as an “undisputed protagonist of Italian design” and presented him with the award for his 40-year career in the presence of dignitaries, the members of ADI (Italian Association of Industrial Design), the Fondazione ADI, the Fondazione Valore Italia, selected guests as well as the press. The Compasso d’Oro Career Award honours Italian and international personalities alike and their outstanding services in the realm of design, research, teaching, production and distribution.

With this year’s award, the ADI bestowed the internationally recognised prize, initiated as early as 1954, 22 times now. Alongside the Compasso d’Oro Career Award, the panel of judges awarded a prize to different individual design objects whose quality is likely to strengthen the awareness for Italian industrial design. The awards were given in Rome this year on the occasion of the 150th anniversary celebration of Italian unification.

Walter de Silva has been Head of Volkswagen Design since 2007; in his position, he is responsible for the design of all brands. Over the course of his career, he has received several design awards, among them the “Design Prize of the Federal Republic of Germany”—the highest official design award in Germany—for the Audi A5 in February 2010.

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