American and Mexican families play with a toy called "up and down" (Seesaw swing) over the Mexican border with US at the Anapra zone in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua State, Mexico on July 28, 2019. / © LUIS TORRES / AFP
The Teeter Totter Wall, an installation of pink seesaws at the US-Mexico border between El Paso in Texas and Ciudad Juárez, has beaten more than 70 nominees including a 3D rendering of the coronavirus to win the prestigious Design of the Year award for 2020.
The installation's creators, Ronald Rael, a professor of architecture at the University of California, Berkeley, and Virginia San Fratello, an associate professor of design at San José State University, placed the seesaws along the steel border fence dividing the US and Mexico in July 2019. The design allowed people on either side of the fence to play together.
For forty minutes, children and adults played with the seesaws, depicted in a post on Rael's Instagram below, in an event which he said brought “joy, excitement and togetherness at the border wall”.
Other nominees for the award included a 3D rendering of the Covid-19 virus; Lee Ha Jun’s set design from his Oscar-winning film Parasite; and a stab-proof vest emblazoned with the Union Jack, as worn by Stormzy at Glastonbury 2019.