The China Post news staff
Design has become increasingly popular worldwide, as many cities across the globe use design to lure visitors and private investors. According to experts, design is able to revitalize cities and showcase the best aspects of an urban environment to the rest of the world. In the face of this, the role of the designer has become ever more significant, as they contribute their creativity and talent to the design industry. Recently, the concept of aesthetic economy has taken shape, as businesspeople realize the importance of design in promoting their brands. Design also plays an important role in helping companies set themselves apart from others through product diversification, which helps raise an enterprise’s image and visibility. Over the past few years, a number of hot young designers have emerged from the Chinese-speaking community. They include Wang Ta-jen, Wu Chi-kang and Chia Wen-lan. Ku Yiu-wen won awards in both London and New York. Chen Shao-yen was honored in a competition in London. To help find more talented designers like them, the Industrial Development Bureau under the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) and the Taiwan Textile Federation are proud to hold the 2011 Taiwan Fashion Design Award, which is now in its 25th year. The competition is the most representative in Taiwan’s design industry and attracts hundreds of participants each year. Some of Taiwan’s most famous designers such as Tou Teng-huang, Chang-Li Yu-ching, Pan Po-hsun, Chien Yu-feng, Hu Ya-chuan and Kang Chia-wei were all award winners from previous contests. “The Ministry of Economic Affairs, in its effort to help the government execute the ‘Golden Decade’ initiative, has set the developmental goal of innovating Taiwan and revitalizing the economy. We want to help manufacturers become more service-oriented and service providers more technology- and international-oriented. Design plays an important role in this. Each year we set aside a significant amount of money to help traditional firms incorporate technology and aesthetic design into their businesses, in the hope of encouraging them to make diverse and value-added products as a way to raise their overall competitiveness,” the MOEA said. The 2011 Taiwan Fashion Design Award had
“Heart, Observation” as its theme and featured various spring and summer clothing designs that may set the fashion trend for next year. The contest was open to online registration at the beginning of the year and lured some 400 young designers. The elimination round took place on June 8, through which 18 finalists were selected, representing such prestigious institutes as Shih Chien University, Fu Jen Catholic University and Shu-Te University. The final winners were then selected and awarded during Taipei IN Style exhibition on Oct. 23. The first-to-third place winners were Hsieh Jen-hsin, Huang Yu-hui and Chen Jung-yen, who received prizes of NT$120,000, NT$90,000 and NT$60,000, respectively. There were three honorable mentions: Chen Yi, Kao Tsai-hsuan and Wang Li-chi, who each got a certificate and prize money of NT$10,000. And the story doesn’t just end there, as the participants will get further help from the government. MOEA said: “We’ll help the participants enroll into more international-level design competitions. We’ve already signed up 150 past participants for various contests. From 2009 to 2011, for example, we’ve got Huang Chia-hsiang, Kang Chia-wei and Wu Luo-lin to take part in fashion shows in Tokyo and other parts of the world.” “Not only that, we also help match designers with businesses that want to use their designs. We’ve successfully matched 250 previous participants with the right companies,” it added.