Winners light up VIVID design awards

Words: Jessica-Anne Lyons

Melbourne designers Hugh Altschwager, and Dale Hardiman and Adam Lynch took away two of the top awards in the VIVID 2013 furniture design competition.

Chosen from a talented range of 60 finalists, Hugh Altschwager of Inkster Maken was named the Commercial Award Winner, and the creative pair from Lab De Stu, Dale Hardiman and Adam Lynch, won the highly sought-after Green Award.

Dubbed by the judges as a “unique talent not often seen in contemporary lighting design,” Melbourne-based construction project manager, Hugh Altschwager’s winning entry, the ‘Flash Light Pendant’ is definitely a flash design.

Hugh handcrafted the torch-inspired light using South Australian Limestone – a 100% natural product normally used in building construction – and reclaimed Australian hardwood.

“In terms of sustainable design, I think it’s important to look outside what most people consider to be ‘normal’ materials,” says Hugh.

“I like to find natural products that are inherently beautiful in their raw form, and then to work on enhancing that, rather than to over-process products and create waste.”

Melbourne design duo from Lab De Stu, Dale Hardiman and Adam Lynch, created ‘Mr Dowel Jones’ out of necessity, with practicality and flexibility in mind.

“Traditional desk lamps have a large base and Dale’s desk wasn’t very wide, so to create more space Dale tied three pieces of dowel together – meaning there were only three points of contact on the desk,” says Adam.

Made of Tasmanian oak dowel pieces in various lengths and locally-sourced rubber attachments, the compact desktop light allows simple-to-do customization of height and size by swapping dowels in the assembly stage to create a light that suits whatever space it is placed in.

Dale and Adam say that sustainability is an inherent part of the practice and of their ethos.

“Manufacturing locally and creating jobs, cutting back on material waste, and creating products that can be easily shipped are defining elements of our approach to design.”

All of the winning designs are currently being displayed at Furnitex: an exhibition for contemporary furniture and furnishing at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre this weekend until July 21.

Images by Marley Brown from Informa

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