We continuously look forward to seeing
new ideas that are “hacked”,
that excites us and provokes our imagination.


YouFab is an award run by FabCafe since 2012, which first began as a competition for creators to simply come together. We aim to build an influential community of creators, by building a platform that connects the creators directly with society.
We seek for works that reflect upon current events that affect our world today.
We look at how bridges are connected between various elements such as the environment, the social, the economic, and the political, with design.
We call on creators from around the world who challenge what we see as normal, by “hacking” into these norms with the medium of design.
We continuously look forward to seeing new ideas that are “hacked”, that excites and provokes our imagination.


YouFab forms a strong creative community with past winners, judges, and industry leaders.
Here are some of the inspirational messages for creators.

  • Asa Ito

    Director, Future of Humanity Research Center, Institute of Innovative Research, Tokyo Institute of Technology

    Asa Ito

    Director, Future of Humanity Research Center, Institute of Innovative Research, Tokyo Institute of Technology

    Who are the stakeholders in the creation you make? We look forward to works that attempt to engage in dialogues that transcend the boundaries of species, space, and time. Direct dialogue may not be possible with some stakeholders. Hence we are also excited to see experiments in communication methods that seek how to interact with such beings. It does not have to be a universal solution, so please give us the best solution you can derive from your locality. We do not limit the format of the work ― it can be furniture, food, architecture, vehicles, communities, or services.

  • Patrick Morgan

    Artist and Educator, Former Director of Wallpaper* RCA Masterclass, founder of Fida

    Patrick Morgan

    Artist and Educator, Former Director of Wallpaper* RCA Masterclass, founder of Fida

    As a creative, opening yourself up to new ways of being different and exposing yourself to critical feedback, is one of the main reasons why events like Youfab help the best in the innovation field grow. The questions you will ask yourself, is the work relevant, is it original and will it change the world. These are all great questions that the best in the industry ask themselves everyday, so if you are asking these questions and are trying to do something new or maybe be different, then this is the perfect competition for you.

  • Keiichiro Matsumura

    Okayama University Literature Department Associate Professorr / YouFab2019 Judge

    Keiichiro Matsumura

    Okayama University Literature Department Associate Professorr / YouFab2019 Judge

    We are entering an era in which people are being asked to be more and more productive. This is what everyone is believing in now. But what exactly does it mean to be "productive in a human way" or to do "creative work"? What I want is to encounter works which seek to shake up the very definition of "productivity/creativity."

  • Akihiro Kato

    Starburn Co., Ltd. Engineer / YouFab2018 Finalist

    Akihiro Kato

    Starburn Co., Ltd. Engineer / YouFab2018 Finalist

    YouFab is a fantastic award that encourages today's people to reconsider what it means to make something at a time when most of us tend to pursue superficial comfort. I feel that, as technology advances rapidly, it is getting all the more significant to make something or to try something. I am looking forward to seeing works that help me discover a new relationship between technology and people that we are only now able to perceive. I look forward to seeing why the artist made that work or what the work is desperately trying to convey.

  • Keisuke Shimakage

    Otonglass President, FabBiotope Founder / YouFab2016 Grad Prize

    Keisuke Shimakage

    Otonglass President, FabBiotope Founder / YouFab2016 Grad Prize

    What will happen when everything is democratized/decentralized? You can create a tool with your own hands. By testing the reinforcement, recovery, reversal, and decline that the tool brings about to your future society, you again remake that tool. That kind of open-ended activity is becoming possible. You can create a tool by yourself to change reality and involve everyone. At the same time, by doing this, you live for the moment while speculating about the future and envisioning a desirable society within that community. With YouFab, we want to see works that provide a glimpse of these kinds of situations which Fab will undoubtedly bring about.

  • Amy Karle

    Internationally Acclaimed Artist, Designer & Futurist, YouFab Grand Prize Winner (2017)

    Amy Karle

    Internationally Acclaimed Artist, Designer & Futurist, YouFab Grand Prize Winner (2017)

    The world as we know it has stopped in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. Things will never be the same… and in this, there is great opportunity to shape our future.

    It is vitally important that we find new ways of coming together, and seize this opportunity to redesign and reframe humanity, physicality, and “experience” in this world where being contactless in quarantine has become the default.

    We must challenge how we think about our world and come up with new and inspiring concepts and projects. YouFab is a celebration and showcase of this kind of thinking. It is both recognition of individual achievements and of a collective community using fabrication tools to create works that can shape our future.

  • Satoshi Yoshiizumi

    TAKT PROJECT Inc. President / Designer

    Satoshi Yoshiizumi

    TAKT PROJECT Inc. President / Designer

    To the extent that the word "Fab" feels almost transparent, digital fabrication has perhaps already become something taken for granted.

    On the one hand, while at first Fab was largely just associated with being a tool, with increasing sophistication and the incorporation of AI, Fab is now beginning to almost seem like a type of personality.

    At such a time, how will people face Fab? A reinterpretation of the relation between a new sense of life and view of nature, in other words technology, human beings, and nature—this is what I have come to hope for with YouFab. This is my Youfab, but what is Fab or YouFab for you? I think YouFab is a place to discuss this very definition, something that changes with every moment. I look forward to encountering your point of view.

  • Julia Cassim

    Professor at KYOTO Design Lab Kyoto Institute of Technology

    Julia Cassim

    Professor at KYOTO Design Lab Kyoto Institute of Technology

    The world of digital fabrication in a paradise for the intrepid digital explorer. Each day, it seems, new tools are added and existing ones are evolved into more sophisticated versions. All of this offers creatives as well as those using them for more functional purposes to explore alternative scenarios around making in all domains.

    This explosion of activity in the digital realm has had a revitalising effect too on the traditional physical world of making - this is especially true in the world of 3D design. In a pre-digital age, designers would make laborious physical models of their prototypes. In the process, they would understand the nature of materials and how design failure could be overcome when the cherished conceptual drawing was challenged by the laws of the physical world or the realities of how it could be used.

    The physical prototype was often replaced wholesale by an onscreen digital version. As a result, the essential skills of thinking through making were weakened for a whole generation of designers who were trained digitally but had little experience of the workshop. Thankfully that situation has been dramatically reversed thanks to the range of tools available for digital fabrication which have allowed designers to revisit this older tradition, gain confidence from a dialogue between the two and use both in combination.

    This is evidenced by the ever-rising quality of entries to the YouFab Awards and its existence as a vital platform for creatives - one that allows the full range of possibility to be displayed , evaluated and curated. As a result, it sets a benchmark for excellence across categories which in turn raises standards in terms of both concept and realisation on an international level.

    I have been privileged to be involved with the YouFab Awards for the past two years and wish it all the best for the future. Onwards and upwards!

  • Michael Koehle


    Michael Koehle


    It was such an honor to receive recognition from YouFab. It gave the opportunity to bring my work to a broader audience and connect with other members of the YouFab community. Traveling to Japan to present my work was an amazing experience. The prize money allowed me to deepen my explorations in digital fabrication in fine art.

  • Neil Mendoza


    Neil Mendoza


    Being part of the YouFab award was a great experience for me. To begin with, entering the competition was quick and straightforward. The competition website brought lots of cutting edge work to my attention from international artists and designers that I wouldn’t have known about otherwise. Winning an award then meant that I had the opportunity to travel to Japan, meet some of these people in person, exhibit my work to a new audience and experience the amazing hospitality of the YouFab team. I highly recommend taking part!


Tokyo, Kyoto, Hida, Taipei, Bangkok, Barcelona, Toulouse, Strasbourg, Monterrey, HongKong, Nagoya. FabCafe is a creator's cafe network, extending around the world. At the FabCafes, unique creators gather, meet, pit their talents against each other, and give presentations on their ideas and creations every day. Since the beginning, the FabCafe Global Network has supported the birth of over 15,000 ideas by holding a various kind of creative workshops and events, all while also offering delicious coffee and comfortable spaces to relax.

The YouFab Global Creative Awards is a compilation of the year's activities. Curators at each location call out to creators they have met and networked within that year to compile a number of impressive submissions from around the world.

At the same time, we are discovering and supporting creators who are likely to change the next generation by recognizing and celebrating their unique works. The large number of YouFab winners so far are connected globally through winning the YouFab Award and their field of activities have expanded.

From Local to Global, Global to Local.

We believe that the next generation of talent is not only born from advanced research facilities or university labs, but also from small towns and communities around the world. The transmission from local to global returns results back to the local. Through this cycle, YouFab is ever becoming more supportive of the world's creatives, as well as international creative businesses.

Co-Founder of FabCafe

Toshiya Fukuda

Triple Seven Creative Strategies Co., Ltd. Representative Director Osaka University of the Arts Professor of Design

From commercial planning in the heyday of commercials, advertising planning in the age of campaigns, experience planning using the Internet, branding planning that integrates all media, UI/UX planning for online services and to business and service planning in the age of DX. Toshiya Fukuda has led creation at the "forefront of planning" in accordance to what each era has required.

Due to his artistic style of aggressively challenging new things, he has won awards overseas not only in advertising promotions but also in a wide range of fields such as website design, application planning, community design, commerce, UI/UX, PR, typography, and book design.

In recognition of his achievements, he has been invited as a judge for major design awards such as Cannes, D&AD, and NYADC.

Since 2004, he has been involved in design education at Musashino Art University and Tama Art University, and is currently working in the design department at Osaka University of Arts, teaching design that transcends the boundaries of media.

WHAT,S FabCafe

FabCafe is a series of ‘Fab’ innovation labs that specialize in creating products, services and experiences of the future. Here, maker enthusiasts, businesses and everyday people can access digital fabrication tools and experiences for fields ranging from fashion to bio. Founded in Tokyo in 2012, FabCafe’s global network now serves and fosters creative communities around the world, including Bangkok, Barcelona, Hong Kong, and many more.