Lifestyle Design Trends Transform Cultural and Creative Energy Into New Creativity
Taipei City has abundant capabilities in the field of cultural and creative design. It possesses numerous creative conglomerates including Huashan 1914 Creative Park, Songshan Cultural and Creative Park, Fun Arts Space, and the Taipei Music Center, as well as various cultural and creative design neighborhoods and museums. Diverse culture and creativity related exhibitions, performances, and markets that are organized draw large crowds. This clearly shows that design has turned into an integral part of urban lifestyles in Taipei. In its attempt to catapult the design industry of Taipei City onto the international stage, the Taipei City Government is firmly committed to converting excellent designs into profitable business concepts.
The Taipei City Government started to organize the Taipei International Design Award and related activities as an annual event in 2008. This event aims to present selected outstanding designs to the whole world through the organization of competitions. In addition to the discovery of creative designs with great commercial potential, the competition also serves the purpose of enhancing urban lifestyles through innovative design concepts. In 2010, the Taipei City Government also started to implement the Taipei City Creative and Design Industry Development Program which aims to provide a further impetus to the development of those industries through industry guidance, talent cultivation, expansion of business opportunities, and marketing through various channels. Diverse activities such as designer sharing sessions, design product fairs, business matching meetings, and international discussion forums are organized regularly to assist outstanding designers in finding a market for their designs and boost the vibrant development of the Taipei City design industry.
It should be pointed out here that award-winning works of the Taipei International Design Award event frequently garner major international awards such as the Japanese “Good Design” award, the German “Red Dot Design” award, the US IDEA (industrial design excellence) award, and the German iF Design award backed by the full support of the Taipei City Government. The accumulated sales volume achieved through commercialization of creative design concepts has reached NT$ 100.78 million, which serves as a good indicator of future brilliance on the international design market.
Did you know that a local business has designed an e-bike that can be folded in two seconds? Did you know that clocks can be incorporated into home lighting devices? These are all original designs from Taipei.
Taipei City has an abundance of outstanding designs, but promising designers lack resources and marketing channels and are therefore often unable to convert their designs into marketable products. The Department of Economic Development, Taipei City Government, therefore, took the initiative in providing industry guidance in 2018. It offers innovative designers support and assistance in the fields of product development, marketing and promotion, crowdfunding, and co-branding through the organization of various activities. Highlights include the successful raising of over NT$ 1.5 million for the Sliders™ e-bike, a new product designed by Mr. Hao-Ting Xu, through a crowdfunding campaign, and assistance in the successful development of an emspace quadrant product by Mr. Zhi-Hao Jiang. Due to the highly attractive appearance and practicality of these designs, the infusion of resources by the city government has resulted in remarkable sales growth and rapidly increasing brand awareness. The footprints of these designers are present both in the physical and virtual world and they have gained considerable popularity not only in Taiwan but also in Europe.
To provide design startups with more publicity platforms and business opportunities, the city government continues to provide industry guidance in 2019 and assists innovative designers in overcoming the “first mile”. It organized a business matching meeting titled “Taipei Lifestyle Design Trends – Business Opportunity Show” in the urban space on the 8th floor of the SOGO Fuxing Store on November 22. Representatives from cultural and creative design related platforms and channels including uDesign, udnFunLife, TTV ishopping, Damanwoo, and Eslite Spectrum Product Development Department, as well as cooperating businesses such as Home Hotel and Cheng Jen Culture and Creativity Co., Ltd. were invited to provide consultation and matching services for designers on the spot. The goal of this event was to link existing designs to different channels and resources and expand opportunities for business and cooperation.
Given the enthusiastic response by designers and the general public to the first “Taipei Lifestyle Design Trends – Design Product Fair” held from September 7 to 8, 2019, the Taipei City Government organized a second fair in the same venue from November 23 to 24. The fair featured 30 carefully selected original brand products created by designers from Taipei including Yu Fan, Jia-Ying You, Zi-Jie Wang, and Zi-Yu Lin who participated in the industry guidance program of the Taipei City Government in 2019. The displays included ingenious designs by LOHAS Pottery, Singular Concept, Uli Design, Sliders™ e-bike (recipients of major international awards such as Good Design, Red Dot, and IF), agoood and Muwu Design (recipients of the Taipei International Design Award). The goal is to significantly increase brand familiarity and give more public exposure to a higher number of excellent designers through the continued provision of diversified platforms and thereby facilitate the transmutation of cultural and creative energy into new creativity.
2019 Taipei International Design Award: Design for Adaptive City
The 2019 Taipei International Design Award is officially recognized by three major international organizations of the design sector World Design Organization (WDO), International Council of Design (ico-D), and International Federation of Interior Architects/Designers (IFI). The number of submitted works and participating countries has hit a record high. 5,384 works from 76 countries were entered for the competition (over 50% of the submitted pieces were created by foreign designers) in 2019. This clearly indicates that this design competition draws the attention of national and international audiences, thereby furthering Taipei’s leadership position in the field of international design.
The 2019 Taipei International Design Award embraces the core concept of “Design for an Adaptive City”. The scope was expanded from “Design Aesthetics and Commerce” to “Reflections and Concern for Urban Society” to encourage designers to show concern for social issues and make a contribution to urban prosperity and progress through their designs. As for the award categories, three new design categories (social design, applied design, and universal design) were added to the original three categories (industrial design, visual communication design, and public space design) to facilitate the discovery of a greater number of promising designers. Special awards setted up in name of the aforementioned international organizations (WDO, ico-D, and IFI) and a cash prize added for the first time to the Taipei City Mayor Award (the most prestigious award) represent additional incentives. The goal is to facilitate the selection of the most representative outstanding designs that are most valuable for the city.
The design concepts of the submissions for this year's competition are deeply connected to daily urban life. They cover a rising diversity of concerns including global issues such as climate change, environmental protection, war, and human rights, as well as digital technology, geriatric care, and child education. In the following passages, we took a look back on works that were honored with a Taipei City Mayor Award or a Gold Award in the three main categories. We hope to inspire your unlimited imagination to realize the dream city in your mind.
- Taipei City Mayor Award: 2019 VERY FUN PARK ’19 Contemporary Art Exhibition
The 2019 VERY FUN PARK ’19 Contemporary Art Exhibition, which garnered the Taipei City Mayor Award in 2019, was planned by two designers (Hsien- Xun Huang and Pu Chen) in cooperation with the Fubon Art Foundation based on the core concept of transforming Taipei into an outdoor museum without walls. The 2019 VERY FUN PARK ’19 Contemporary Art Exhibition, which espouses the theme of “Chair・Present”, stresses the concept of the city as a network characterized by constant links between the urban environment and humans and co-existence and co-prosperity. Eight artists from Taiwan, Denmark, Hong Kong, Italy, and France were enlisted to visualize the urban network concept from the standpoint of artistic creation at 10 exhibition locations in the Xinyi District of Taipei City. The ultimate goal was to infuse this commercial district with a rich artistic aura. Even more remarkably, this exhibition also incorporated AR technology. Citizens were able to use their App to scan the ARMarks at every exhibition location, which enabled them to interact with the works and access the audio guides, thereby stimulating interactions between citizens and public spaces. Novel art experiences and consensual perceptions generated by the artists fully demonstrate the liberal and pluralistic character of the city which is bursting with scientific creativity. The exhibition was therefore honored with a 2019 Taipei International Design Award by the unanimous decision of the jury.
- Visual Communication Design Gold Award: • T ONE (T Project Almanac • T ONE)
T ONE (T Project Almanac • T ONE), an album designed by Mr. Zi-Hao Wang from China earned the Gold Award in the visual communication design category. This work utilizes the paper texture and book pages combined with unique design concepts to present the achievements of the Young Artists Exhibition and Research Program of the School of Sculpture and Public Art of the China Academy of Art over four years. A hollowed-out dot pattern was utilized for the table of content entries to create interesting effects through light and shadow penetration and diffusion. The beginning of every chapter features two tearable pages that generate a layered effect through the paper texture and colors after tearing. An M-shaped foldable design was employed for the exhibition and lecture information section to highlight the content artists and speakers wish to express. These ingenious design elements exhibit the imagery the young artist employs to illustrate the impact of art and academics to the general public. This work was praised by the judges as an impeccable visual communication design concept that is close to perfection.
- Industrial Design Gold Award: River Cleaner
Mr. Guo-Qiang Chen, an overseas Chinese student from Malaysia, received the Gold Award in the industrial design category for his River Cleaner. Based on a deep concern for the worsening problem of marine garbage and his realization that 90% of this garbage originates in rivers, he attempts to solve this serious issue at the source. This work utilizes Archimedes’ principles to drive an auger screw conveyor by relying on the river bend topography and the natural rhythm and force of the water flow. This apparatus gathers the plastic garbage in refuse chutes, which allows prompt and rapid removal and placement of trash on the riverbanks. In contrast to generic garbage treatment systems that employ interception mechanisms, this design achieves river purification with minimal energy consumption. It is worth mentioning that this design was not only honored with the Gold Award in the industrial design category but also earned a special recognition at the 2019 Young Pin Design Award in the social design category, which is a clear indicator for the great development potential of this invention.
- Public Space Design Gold Award: Election Campaign Headquarter
The Election Campaign Headquarter designed by BIAS Architects and Associates garnered the Gold Award in the public space design category. Due to its intended usage as an election campaign headquarters, the design concept utilizes urban landscape and architecture as an access point and incorporates humanistic lifestyle concepts and multicultural values in Taoyuan. A penetrating annular space represents the main design theme. The central plaza, on the other hand, forms the Taoyuan City Map, featuring gravel pavement and grass areas. The designers created a shared space with a sense of penetration. The roof design with its undulating flow line resembles an extended stream resonating with the adjacent park riverbanks and urban architecture, forming a humanistic image of urban inclusiveness.
Besides, all utilized building materials are eco-friendly, recyclable, and reusable. The design also features greenhouse structures which are a common sight in Taiwanese farm villages. A shading web-like membrane creates a visually appealing intersection of internal and external spaces with varying light and shadow patterns and aesthetics at day and night. Due to a simultaneous emphasis on aesthetics and practicality in line with the core spirit of “Design for an Adaptive City”, it received a very positive appraisal from the jury.
Apple founder Steve Jobs once said: “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” The soft power of Taipei cultural and creative design draws rising international attention and its design concepts have gradually moved from a narrow artistic focus to a macro-perspective of social progress. Looking ahead, the Taipei City Government will continue to link and integrate the design industry capabilities through diversified and interdisciplinary communication and practices. It will support every designer who tirelessly pursues a dream and vision to usher in a new future through creative designs and jointly realize the core concept of “Design Taipei; Dream Taipei”.
Please follow this link to view more exciting designs in 2019 Taipei International Design Award: https://www.taipeidaward.taipei/rwden/