290°: DJCAD Degree Show 2013
18 May 2013 - 26 May 2013
On the face of it, defining Interior Environment Design seems like an impossible challenge. Primarily designing an atmosphere or an experience, your final outcome might still be “intangible” and yet you must still be able to communicate your ideas effectively. This is a challenge but it is not impossible. Such complexities mean that outcomes might well be varied, highly creative and dynamic, and this is true of projects seen at this year’s Interior Environmental Design Degree Show.
Interior environmental designs encourage new ideas but one must also think about preservation: conservation of buildings through renovation; nurturing community through social enterprise projects; safe-guarding businesses facing challenging financial times; protecting our environment through ecological initiatives and maintaining physical environments by integrating rather than substituting the digital for them.
This year’s social enterprise theme tackles issues from homelessness, mental illness, crime, community and local business and proposing some innovative solutions. Ross Crawford, influenced by his involvement in Dundee’s successful Design Jam, has taken the idea of creative collaboration that connects the global creative community and developed a project to do just that in previously ill-used and unused areas of cities, with similar initiatives around the globe. Fawn Russell has taken on an unusual project in conjunction with HMP low security open prison in Dundee called These Four Walls. Experimenting with natural light within her spaces, Russell has challenged ideas of incarceration, punishment and enforcement, providing an alternative environment for discipline.
Enterprising Paula Grubb has been working with fellow DJCAD students from a variety of disciplines and designed a pop-up shop, Show Off, giving student designers the opportunity to bring their creations onto the High Street. In his proposal, So Sow, John MacDonald has tapped into the current enthusiasm about local produce and supporting local business, hoping to get the community excited about food. He has designed a community swap service where home-growers to local industrial food producers can sell seeds and produce. With farmers now looking for easier and more efficient ways of producing more crops in smaller spaces, Duncan Perkins has designed and crafted a structure for growing strawberries that achieves exactly that. His sketchbooks, featuring amazing working sketches, gives great insight into production process and thinking.
Shona Cairns project display exudes creativity and hands on exploration of materials and forms. This initial development has then led to her design, The Epicentre: a space to highlight climate change and host imaginative projects that will encourage public involvement.
Focusing primarily on process and research into sound physics and shape formations, Hamish Newall-Watson has considered how digital technology can be merged with spatial design by developing a temporary modular structure in his project, Para Surface.Able to shape spaces at a variety of events and festivals, these built forms can then be projection-mapped onto to display digital media, adding to the atmosphere of the physical space. Aiming to enhance the physical experience with the digital to provide a new shopping experience Esther Lockhart has successfully designed a retail space which combines the virtual online shopping experience with the actual.
Interiors are diverse, with DJCAD Interior Environmental Design alumni going into 28 different creative areas within the industry. Already Paula Grubb has been backed to take her Show Off business concept further and Shona Cairns has been shortlisted for a prestigious nationwide interior design competition. After the degree show, these design students are taking their work to exhibit and present to industry at the graduate design show Free Range in London. The 2013 Degree Show won’t give you the answer to that impossible question of what exactly Interior Environmental Designs are but will instead show and inspire you to think about all the things they could be.
Eilish Victoria Mackay