Ceramic Tiles of Italy (CTI) is now accepting entries for its 18th Annual Design Competition. The competition, sponsored by Ceramic Tiles of Italy and The Italian Trade Commission, recognizes “outstanding examples of contemporary American design featuring Italian ceramic tiles.”

North American architects and interior designers are invited to submit residential, commercial/hospitality and institutional projects completed between January 2006 and January 2011. Entries may be submitted for domestic and international new construction and renovation projects.Deadline is January 17, 2011.

A panel of design experts will judge the projects based on their creativity, functionality and aesthetic appeal. The official criterion for the jury includes: overall design of the project, innovative use of tile, tile design, quality of installation, degree that tile enhances the setting and the project’s sustainable attributes.

Winners in each category will receive a cash prize of $4,000 and a trip to Coverings, which will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada from March 14-17, 2011. Winners will also be treated to a five-day trip to Cersaie 2011. The organization will once again offer an additional $1,000 to be shared by the winning contractor/distributor team.

Interested architects/designers can download an application off the competition’s official websitehere.