Swinburne Bachelor of Design (Industrial Design) alum, Isaac Pelchen, has won two prestigious design awards at the 2021 Vibrant Visions in Design (VIVID) Awards in Melbourne for his object design, the Optic Candelabra.
The awards ceremony is Australia’s longest running competition for emerging designers.
Mr Pelchen won both the 2021 Object Design Award and 2021 Colour Design Award for his Optic Candelabra and says he is very proud of the achievement.
‘I feel honoured and privileged. Winning the first award was a thrill and winning a second came as a complete shock. A lot of effort went into the conceptualisation and development of the Optic so it was enormously gratifying to know that the judges understood and appreciated the design as it was intended,’ Mr Pelchen says.
Isaac Pelchen at the 2021 VIVID Design Competition in Melbourne, Australia.
Made from high quality epoxy resin, Mr Pelchen explains how the Optic Candelabra plays with light to create motion.
‘The Optic Candelabra was conceived from an exercise in the exploration of refracted light. As light passes through the convex and concave layers it’s diverted, refracting the light and creating an optic like effect. The vibrant pigments were chosen to represent the spectrum of colours that are revealed during refraction. As the candle burns the candelabra’s form harnesses the phenomena of refraction and puts it into motion.
‘I like to work with materials and processes that I have control over and can produce in-house. I selected epoxy resin because it has a refraction index similar to glass, making it perfect for casting optics,’ he says.
The Optic Candelabra on display at the 2021 VIVID Design Competition.
Mr Pelchen says asking questions is crucial for developing more innovative designs.
‘I’ve learnt a lot of important skills through my industrial design degree that have given me the ability to create and produce my designs. But I find when I sit down to design something the most important thing I’ve learnt is to ask why? Why should this exist? Why is it unique? How does it challenge our thinking or spark intrigue? After all what’s the point in repeating what others have already done?
‘I’m currently working on a series of hardware made from reclaimed epoxy waste. The design allows users to create furniture from bought, found or reconstituted materials. The intent is to decentralise manufacturing and reduce carbon emissions from production and transport,’ Mr Pelchen says.