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ECU design students on show at IKEA

Friday, 06 November 2009


Students from Edith Cowan University's (ECU) Interior and Spatial Design course are holding the program's second ever exhibition at the IKEA Innaloo store.

Earlier this year, third-year students undertook the challenge of designing a single chair inspired by an existing building or architectural structure.

Fourteen students participated in the project, each submitting a design concept in scale model form.

The designs were presented to IKEA and Brandur Einarsson's design, the Fred and Ginger chair was chosen for fabrication as a life size prototype.

Brandur said he was inspired by the Dancing House in Prague, designed by Frank Gehry, which was constructed in the mid-90s to reflect a man and a woman dancing together (thought to be Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers).

"The final outcome is a recliner chair and a footstool that could live as an individual, independent piece, or as a pair, in a relaxing residential corner where the book and headphones are within reach," Brandur says.

Brandur's chair also won the Art Gallery of Western Australia's Design Challenge for 2009 in June.

Second-year students will also be involved in the display, exhibiting their window display projects.

Students received a design brief from IKEA, requiring them to design a window display promoting one item of furniture from the IKEA collection.

Course Coordinator, Monita Roughsedge says the partnership with IKEA has provided excellent experience for ECU students in recent years.

"The hands on, real-life experience and public exposure that this partnership makes possible for our students is an invaluable part of their overall learning experience and design education," she said.

According to IKEA's Communication and Interior Design Manager, Nigel Richardson, strong visual communication is highly valued at IKEA.

"Well-designed, functional products at low prices are the cornerstone of the IKEA business. Our partnership with ECU is based upon helping to foster the talent of emerging designers in Perth.

"This partnership has challenged the students to not only develop their ideas, but also effectively communicate them," he said.

The exhibition opens on Monday, 9 November and will run for two weeks.

The Interior and Spatial Design course at ECU is offered at the Mount Lawley Campus as a major in the Bachelor of Creative Industries.

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