Award-winning design and its makers: the electric guitar “Revstar”

In February, 39 experts from all over the world convened in Essen to assess thousands of objects for the Red Dot Award: Product Design 2017 in a process spanning several days. Only designs that won over the jury with their high design quality were awarded the sought-after distinction “Red Dot”, and the best of them received the highest award “Red Dot: Best of the Best” – among them: the electric guitar “Revstar” by Yamaha and Hamamatsu, designed by Piotr Stolarski, Toshihide Suzuki, Michael Tropper, Joohee Lee, Mark Jones and Volker Pflueger.

Fascinating legend
In line with the 50-year heritage of Yamaha guitar craftsmanship, this range of stylistically distinctive electric guitars has emerged as the result of an intricate development process. The guitars are excellently engineered to adapt to the different personalities and playing styles of musicians. Each detail has been carefully crafted and honed to lend each model a unique personality and secure its place in the range. Remarkable design aspects include the curves and contours of the ground-up body shape, individual colours and finishes, as well as a choice of custom-wound pickups to perfectly match the guitar’s character. In this sense, the design of the Revstar collection skilfully embodies an extension of a musical legend – comprising instruments that are as individualistic as the guitarists who play them.

Red Dot: Best of the Best for Revstar
The Red Dot jury stated: „The Revstar electric guitar merges the fascinating appearance of classic guitar models with the sophisticated use of highly advanced technology. It showcases a refined design quality with perfectly implemented details and finishes. Timeless in appearance, it delivers outstanding sound quality. Firmly embedded in the Yamaha tradition of craftsmanship, this range of electric guitars manages to project a new experience of the Yamaha brand.” The jury awarded the Red Dot: Best of the Best for this outstanding design achievement. Red Dot spoke with the designers. 

Red Dot: What was your goal when you designed Revstar?
Lee, Pflueger, Stolarski, Tropper, Jones & Suzuki:
We wanted to reignite the love for Yamaha guitars by celebrating the unique Japanese culture and the long history of the company. 

Was your award-winning product based on a particular design approach?
Endless conversations with musicians and experts provided us with the insights on which we based our design for an instrument that could become an inspirational tool for guitarists.

How do you define quality?
Quality comes in combination with honesty. We have to respect the function, express it with a genuine form and be sincere about the materials and finishes used.

Publication of the products and tribute to the winners
The award ceremony took place on Monday, 3 July 2017. During the Red Dot Gala in Essen’s Aalto-Theater, the laureates of the top award, the “Red Dot: Best of the Best” were recognised – among them Artemide, Kartell, Audi, Hansgrohe, Bora, Electrolux, LG, Canyon Bicycles, Philips, Puma, Niessing, Apple and Bose. After the opening of the special exhibitions “Design on Stage” and “Canyon – Design that talks”, prize winners and guests celebrated together in the Red Dot Design Museum in the midst of the award-winning products at the Designers’ Night. Photos of the event can be found in our photo gallery.

» Further information on the Red Dot Award: Product Design