design

University of the Arts London Postgraduate Scholarships, UK, 2017

University of the Arts London (UAL), UK, offers the following range of courses: Communication and graphic design, 3D design and product design, Accessories, footwear and jewellery, Animation, interactive, film and sound, Architecture and spatial design, Business & management, and science, Curation and culture, Fashion design, Fine art, Illustration, Journalism, PR, media and publishing, Photography, Textiles and materials, Theatre, screen and performance design.

Scholarships are offered in all the departments across the University. For 2017, there are 33 scholarships on offer as part of the UAL Vice-Chancellor’s International Postgraduate Scholarships. There are two types of scholarships, each with different eligibility criteria. One offers a £5,000 tuition fee remission (25), and the other a £25,000 award (8) and accommodation generously provided by International Students House (ISH). Read More…

Good Design Awards (Australia) 2016

Since 1958, Australia’s annual Good Design Awards program has been recognizing and rewarding excellence in design, innovation and creativity at a national and international level (read, mostly national) – not to be confused with the Japanese ‘G Mark‘ Good Design Award. It is one of the prestigious design awards, and this year, through rigorous evaluation and judging processes, the best entries (mainly Australian) in each category were declared. Take a look. Read More…

World Architecture Festival 2014: Winners

This year’s World Architecture Festival held in Singapore saw architects and architecture studios from across the globe compete for honors in the macro categories of completed buildings, future, small projects and landscape. In recognizing worldwide architectural excellence and celebrating the built environment, the festival was attended by over two thousand architects, designers, and clients. The festival’s jury comprised some of the world’s leading architects and designers, led by British architect Richard Rogers, with Rocco Yim (Hong Kong), Julie Eizenberg (USA), Enric Ruiz Geli (Spain), Peter Rich (South Africa) and many others. Here is a selection of the winners of the World Architecture Festival 2014. Take a look.  Read More…

Designs of the Year 2014: Product Design Nominees

Designs of the Year‘ is the London, UK located Design Museum‘s exhibition of the most innovative, intriguing and original international design across the seven categories of Product, Architecture, Digital, Fashion, Furniture, Graphic and Transport design. Although global in spirit, I do sense a Euro-Western Europe slant in the list of nominees across the categories. Starting today (26th of March, 2014), voting opens as part of the social jury process in selecting the winners of round one, across the seven categories for the final exhibition. These are the nominees for Product Design for the year 2014. Take a look.

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Jenni Sparks and David Robinson: Hand mapping cities

Creative cartographic expressions are a distinct challenge, especially if they have to possibly double up as real word navigational aids as well. There is this tension between creative, expressive liberty and the concrete ‘rootedness’ in directionality, topographic fidelity and cartographic accuracy. The complexity of a project of this nature increases manifold when it is to be hand drawn entirely without rapid erase, undo, redo tools. Precision of line coupled with a quirky ‘sense of humor’, which in turn is married to the larger vision of a macro city to micro map translation, undoubtedly showcase the remarkable skills and abilities of British illustrators Jenni Sparks and David Ryan Robinson. Take a look.

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Polish cine posters: Artist liberation and aesthetic innovation

Apocalypse Now (1979)

Lending considerable prestige to the ‘stick-to-the-wall-and-tear-it-down’ medium of the poster, was the first International Exposition of the Poster held in Krakow, Poland in the fag end of the 19th century, 1898 to be precise. Jan Wdowiszewski, the then director of the ‘Technical Industrial Museum’ authored two essays devoted to the art of the poster, and in conceiving the Poster Exposition, tapped into the artistic vitality of Krakow of that era, and in turn laid the foundations of what will be later internationally known as Polish Poster Art. The artists associated with the initial poster years in Poland were from the Academy Of Fine Arts and were members of the Society of Polish Artists“Sztuka” – there was acceptability associated with creating posters of various kinds, and over the next century, this specific ‘zeitgeist’ saw some of the most remarkable visual expressions through posters, making them an identifiable and essential part of Polish culture. With Polish independence, post First World War, Tadeusz Gronowski, an architecture student at the University of Warsaw rose to the fore as one of the key ‘architects’ of Polish poster art, responding to the needs of an industrialized nation and the urgently required advertising communications. Gronowski’s work was marked by modernist, cubist impulses and an irreverence for visual tradition, a liberating move from the poster styles of the earlier periods. His work was carried further by later architects turned graphic artists from the University of Warsaw.  Read More…

World Architecture Festival 2013: Winners

The World Architecture Festival took place in Singapore this year and saw around 200 shortlisted projects compete for awards in 30 different categories, from offices and places of religion, to family homes, schools, shopping centers, and future architecture projects. WAF is arguably the most prestigious of architectural honors in the world, and it draws the best of talent from across nations. The shortlisted projects and the wide range of architectural interventions presented in the festival is indicative of the fertility of the built environment, of creative processes and responsibilities accruing to furthering of thinking and doing architecture, in breathing life into spaces and structures for human families, communities, and societies worldwide. Take a look at the top honors.

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Product Design: ‘Inspired Urban Living’ 2013.

1700 product concepts from over 60 countries made their presence felt in this year’s Electrolux Design Lab, in response to the brief of ‘Inspired Urban Living’. Industrial and product designers pitched in with some common themes addressing personal care and care of the near and dear ones – from healthier, cleaner homes to cooking, from appliance accessories to domestic robots. Product concepts emerging out of design schools are audacious at times, and one can see a hint of it in some of the concepts. Bio-mimicry appears to be catching on, along with the need for us to breathe non-polluted air. Not all of the concepts are going to go through to final development and prototyping – but for the very few that do, it will still remain a test to see if what looked good as idea sketches and concept notes, actually function as envisaged in the everyday real world. Take a look at some of the entries for the Electrolux Design Lab 2013.

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Frank Lloyd Wright: Architecture and the making of the human spirit

By his own admission, Wright was the greatest architect of all time. In this interview recorded at the Plaza Hotel in New York City in 1956, he touches on various facets of his architectural vision, made intense by his ideas about the making of the human spirit. More than any other modernist, he went through several distinct stylistic phases, and he does talk about his well known projects like the Unity Temple, Robie House, La Miniatura, and Falling Water. Rather than thinking of architecture as segmented, Wright perceived it as continuous and flowing, not as so many rooms added together but as a sculptable whole. He elaborates on his ideas of organic architecture, natural architecture, or “Architecture of Integrity”, integrity being the key expression. In this interview, some of his articulations do raise eyebrows, for example, he does appear to be sexist, and a ‘powerfreak’ of sorts, along with dropping gems like “Culture is an individual thing, culture is not for the crowd/herd”. His comparison of architecture and music is of interest though, and Ludwig van Beethoven seems to have played his part in inspiring some, if not all, of Wrights work. Listen in.

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Product Design – Electrolux Design Lab 2012: Finalists

Design Lab is Swedish appliances major Electroluxs’ annual student product design competition. In this tenth year of the contest, there were 1200 entries, from which these ten finalists were shortlisted to battle it out in Milano, Italy on 25.10.12. As I was going through the entries, the final thirty and now down to ten, it was quite clear that the shortlisting was done considering the Electrolux business idea of a ‘smart’ kitchen / home, with an ‘amazing range of capabilities’. I also paused to think whether there has been a collective dumbing down in this rather frenzied race for ‘smartness’. Student contests do have an exploitative edge, as major corporations seek out business-next ideas for the price of a cola can. The text accompanying each of the entries here is untouched and presented in their sugar coated, sales pitch manner. I found some of the project ideas redundant and almost laughable, and for large populations of the world, most of them are alien objects, sans meaningful form and credible function.

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