Members of Team Zoom couldn’t stop smiling as they found themselves atop their design world Nov. 14 by winning first prize in the annual OCAD U Faculty of Design Competition.
“Some of us are graduating this year,” said team member Junghyun Yoo, a fourth-year Environmental Design student, who created the winning entry with teammates Seung Min Park, and Gi Woong Choi, also fourth year ED students, Hyo Shik Kim, a third-year Advertising student, and Bo Mi Min, a third-year Graphic Design student. “We’ve been working together four or five years, and this is a last, really good memory.”
Dr. Sara Diamond, the university’s president, announced the first, second and third prize winners at an awards ceremony in the Great Hall and surprised the assembled crowd by revealing an additional prize, due to a tie for second place. In addition to Zoom’s top prize, the second prizes went to Project X and to Feed, while Hakuna Matata earned third prize.
The theme of the 2013 competition was the ecology of student wellness, and participants were challenged by the design brief to “consider ways of promoting wellness in your immediate environment: OCAD U.” They had four days to complete their projects once the brief was presented.
Professor Alexander Manu from the Faculty of Design, a keynote speaker at the awards ceremony, said the committee decided on an internal focus this year. “We had tackled every subject outside ourselves and it was time to tackle us: student concerns,” he said.
“OCAD U has been very courageous in talking about the way students have had mental health challenges at times,” said Dr. Diamond. “This is one of the ways we have to conduct a thoughtful dialogue.”
The members of Team Zoom created a project that reflects a belief that wellness comes from the inner self, as well as from connections between friends, between students and the university and between the university and society at large.
The project has three strands, the team members explained: mirrored visual images painted with key words, such as passion, to remind students why they were initially attracted to art and design; projections of student works on the exterior of the building to foster pride and inform the community about the work being done inside; and street furniture modelled on the OCAD U logo to show the public that art is something with which they can interact.
The second and third place winners took varying approaches to the challenge. Project X offered “a series of installations that embrace primitive engagement, collaborative human initiative and movement.” Feed created a “platform to help students understand personal values in their chosen fields,” and Hakuna Matata designed “neutral, non-territorial spaces where students can come together to de-stress and form new connections.”
The Project X team included Stephanie Bowles, John Mark Nicomedez, Calvin Hui and Joahanna Cabalu. Feed included Danielle Jedral, Julie Topp, Mary Bulnes Velez and Maya Das Gupta. Hakuna Matata was Rachel Jui Yun Ma, Alice (Ye Seul) Kim, Hongye (Amy) Li and Subbadra Venkatesan.
The contest entries will remain on display in the Great Hall until Nov. 20.
Story by Elaine Smith
Faculty of Design
Design competition brief