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IESNYC Announces Winners for the 2009 “Audible Light” Student Design Competition

IESNYC Announces Winners for the 2009 “Audible Light” Student Design Competition

From the glow of anticipation, to the brilliance of the entries, the Illuminating Engineering Society, NYC Section, hosted an exhilarating Ninth Annual Student Design Competition and Exhibition, March 4th and 5th at the Helen Mills Theater.

Students of lighting, architecture, interior design, art, product design, photography and electrical engineering programs created three-dimensional work designed to conceptually convey a sensory perception of sound. This exercise in “synesthesia” elicited more than fifty five submissions in a diverse range of variations on the theme. All displayed a level of creativity and ingenuity that not only impressed those who attended the reception and exhibition opening, but also made selection of the winners difficult for the jury.

Comments of the distinguished judges attest to the high caliber of the entries; Christine Hope of Focus Lighting said it was “tough narrowing down the finalists,” Charles Matz, AIA and RIBA pointed out that all the judges agreed, however, that it was the conceptual aspect of the works that most impressed them and led to their final decisions. Joining them in the decision-making process were Jack Weisberg of US Sound Engine 27; Sun Hee Lim, Senior Associate at Johnson Light Studio, and Marc Clemenceau Bailly, founding partner of Gage/Clemenceau Architects.

Awards and Travel

First Place Award of $3,000 cash and participation in the prestigious one week lighting design workshop in Europe sponsored by PLDA, Professional Lighting Designer's Association, was won by Hye Yeun Lee, of Parsons for “Subway Sound”. Inspired by her daily subway ride, where her favorite distraction en route is to “look at the beautiful lights,” her project captures the experience spatially, kinetically and visually. One can sense speeding through a tunnel with the movement of lights evoking the sounds of a screeching train. An interior design student at Parsons The New School for Design, Lee's project is the first lighting design she has ever attempted. Instructor: Randy Sabedra.

Second Place Award of $1500 went to Ching-Yu Lin for his “Hey! It's a Party”. An interactive turntable design, it responds with light to one's touch when spinning records in patterns that shine through, simulating and stimulating a sense of rhythm. Lin is an MFA Lighting Design student at Parsons School of Design. Instructor: Nelson Jenkins.

Third Place Award of $1000 was won by the team of Young Taek OhWinnersSubway SoundHey! ItMake It Rain-Rain Box, who studies Interactive Telecommunications at NYU, and Sukmo Koo, an Industrial Design student at Pratt Institute. Titled “Make It Rain-Rain Box,” their project mimics sound of raindrops on a roof with “drops” of light that are activated when one pushes a button. Instructor: Karen Stone.

Honorable Mention Award consisting of a free trip to GE's “Lighting Institute” at Nela Park, Cleveland, Ohio, was given to two MFA candidates in Lighting Design at Parsons School of Design; Kacie Stigliano was recognized for “Rhythms,” and Sungbin Ma for “The Sound of Glitz.” Instructor for both students: Nelson Jenkins.

The keynote address by Linnaea Tillett, PhD, on the theme of “Audible Light” with a historical overview of critical thinking about the senses and the intriguing concept of synesthesia was roundly applauded. Founder and principal of Tillett Lighting Design, Inc., and a faculty member of the Masters in Lighting Design program at Parsons The New School for Design, Tillett is one of the most sought-after speakers in the industry.

Publisher Joachim Ritter, Professional Lighting Designers Association (PLDA), followed with an informative talk on the works and workings of the PLDA, including the Association's educational and training aims and worldwide scope. A slide show of fascinating design spaces developed and implemented by winning teams of young designers and students, guided by professional lighting designers, in the PLDA Workshop Program, illustrated what this year's top prize winner can anticipate.

IESNYC credits lead sponsor of the event, Bartco Lighting, who also sponsored the after party.

Supporters: National Cathode and Professional Lighting Designer Association

Contributors: Acuity Brands, Electronic Theatre Controls (ETC), Elliptipar, Enterprise Lighting Sales, GE Lighting, LSI, Pyramid Lighting, Visa Lighting

Donators: Kurt Versen, Louis Poulsen, Lutron, Winona

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