Young Australian Designers


August 27, 2003

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Thursday August 28, 2003

An alternative to the humble beanbag and a sleek ice-cream scoop with a functional heated base topped The Sydney Morning Herald's Young Designer of the Year Awards.

Answering the award brief to "Chill Out in White", 21-year-old University of NSW Industrial Design student Lan Nguyen-Hoan was the top winner for her entry Knot Cushion - a two-metre beanbag alternative made from foam and covered in calico and silk ribbon.

The runner-up was twenty-four-year-old University of NSW Industrial Design graduate Shimi Barr for Scoop - an aluminium ice-cream scoop with heated base making the act of extracting cold, hard ice-cream much easier.

This year a Special Jury Prize was presented to 29-year-old Sydney University architecture graduate Benjamin Johnston for Tatamiorigami. Inspired by the traditional Japanese tatami mat, the design creates a new environment in which to relax using of a series of square white cushions on which you can walk, sit or recline.

More than 90 aspiring designers entered the 2003 Young Designer of the Year competition to design an object, environment, implement or piece of furniture that enhanced rest and relaxation within the domestic environment. Visit for further reading.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, (Australia's largest Telco), (Australia's largest employment site),,, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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