19 June 2012
RMIT graduate scoops national design awards
Textile Design graduate Sarah Strickland has won two major design awards at this year's Australasian Graduate of the Year Awards (AGOTYA).
Ms Strickland, who studied RMIT University's Bachelor of Arts (Textile Design), was joint winner of Design Institute of Australia's 2012 AGOTYA award for excellence. She received $1,000, sponsored by Artichoke magazine and the DIA.
She also won first prize in the Textile Design category, receiving a $1,000 voucher for Product Ecology Online, sponsored by WSP.
AGOTYA is a portfolio-based awards program for final-year design students and recent design graduates in Australia and New Zealand. Students from 19 institutions entered.
Ms Strickland's winning projects focused on sustainable and innovative design solutions that aim to bring the community together.
The judges - Madeline Lester AM, Past National President of the DIA; Professor Lyndon Anderson, Canberra University; and Jan Henderson, Associate Publisher of Architecture Media - said the joint winning submissions showed "exceptional skill, innovation (and) maturity, embracing sustainability at a very responsible level".
Ms Strickland's designs were "a thoughtful collection" and had "the capacity to provoke an emotional response as a work of art", they said.
Ms Strickland designed a range of "Talisman" clothing textiles based on three traditional stories, The Pied Piper, The Emperor's New Clothes, and The Fisherman's Wife.
She said her desire was to find "creative, interactive solutions to textile design problems".
"Incorporating the idea of 'made by hand' is very important to my work and I have preference for hand-generated media, drawing on my expertise in illustration, painting and printmaking," she said.
"A strong sense of social responsibility is ingrained into my practice. When making decisions, I not only consider the market, trend and application, but also the impact of each decision in a broader perspective.
"I used a combination of contemporary and classic textile design techniques, including classic and digital screen printing, to develop transportable fabrics for renters in short-term housing.
"I also used renewable materials to create and design a small-scale planter, Urban Oasis, for the urban dweller," she said.
Patrick Snelling, RMIT's Program Director BA Textile Design, said: "Sarah is a talented young designer who is proving herself as a great contributor to the design community.
"She is carving a brilliant future in the design profession.
"Gaining recognition for these student awards from our peers and the DIA affirms that RMIT is a leader in textile design," Mr Snelling said.
Sarah Strickland, flanked by Design Institute of Australia officials.
Ms Strickland's Talisman designs.
Her design for an urban planter.