Under-explored subject of design for huaren communities finally gets attention is deserves in 2015 Greater China salon series
Jul 20, 2015

Surprising new trends in huaren design revealed by more than 60 Design Perspectives x Golden Pin Salon 2015 series speakers including Freeman Lau of KL&K Design (Hong Kong), Huang Zeping of Haier Innovation Center (China), and Tony Tseng of Taiwan Cultural & Creative Industry Association, among many others

Since March 2015, in a series of public salons held in more than 10 cities across Greater China under the banner of Design Perspectives x Golden Pin Salon, more than 60 Chinese, Taiwanese, and international design industry professionals have been delving deep into a severely under-explored subject: that of design created for and within huaren (Chinese-speaking) communities. The events are organized by the Golden Pin Design Award and the Golden Pin Concept Design Award–two Taiwan-based international awards that celebrate innovative design and design concepts created for and within huaren communities.

Chen Wenlong, CEO of the Taiwan Design Center, the organisers of the Golden Pin award group, spoke at a Salon held in Tianjin on June 12, 2015. “Few designs truly cater to the lifestyle and aesthetic considerations of those living in huaren communities,” he said. “Collectively, huaren (Chinese-speaking) communities constitute the world’s largest economy, and people living in these communities are increasingly seeking a higher quality of life. It’s time to start designing with the needs and wants of huaren in mind. The Golden Pin Design Award and the Golden Pin Concept Design Award have a responsibility to celebrate organizations and individuals that design for huaren communities.”

New trends in huaren design uncovered in the 2015 Salons to date include:

History adds value, emotion to contemporary huaren design

“Modern design can extract the essence from traditional wisdom and develop it into a flexible concept for use in today’s products," said Yang Wen Qing, design educator and 2014 Golden Pin Design Award winner, at the debut Golden Pin Salon in Shanghai in March 2015. In Hong Kong, renowned designer and contemporary artist Freeman Lau urged huaren designers to reconnect with and reimagine traditional Chinese concepts and elements in their work. “It is through the modern redesign of classic Chinese objects that younger generations can better understand and appreciate traditional culture, habits, and customs,” said Tony Tseng, CEO of Artilize Worldwide Co. Ltd and Vice President of the Taiwan Cultural and Creative Industry Association (TCCIA), in Chengdu.

Renaissance for Chinese typography and character design

“Chinese calligraphy began as a functional communication tool and today is an art form that can be considered a symbol of huaren culture,” said Chen Nan, a design professor Tsinghua University who spoke at the Beijing salon. In Tianjin, Prof. Lin Pansong, a design educator based in Taiwan, urged global brands to use Chinese characters if they wish to succeed in China. “The written Chinese language differs from Western text in that it is able to communicate shape, pronunciation, and meaning, and considered and innovative applications of Chinese characters in a design is a creative way to pay respect to the Chinese market,” he said. “Interest in the redesign of Chinese characters is undergoing a renaissance,” said Yi-Yuan Ma, COO of

HanYi Fonts, speaking in Harbin.

Contemporary products designed specifically for huaren lifestyle

Speaking in Beijing, Kumo Chiu, Founder of Idea Dao Design Ltd and Cultural and Creative Director of LKK Design Ltd, said it is “only when designers can recognise and meditate on their own culture that they will be able to design products that integrate their personal style with the needs of the market.” In Qingdao, Huang Zeping, Design Director for Casarte at the Haier Innovation Center, noted that “a design cannot be considered a Chinese design unless it integrates completely with the huaren lifestyle, conveys the right emotions, and uses innovations in science and technology in its functions.”

Design Perspectives x Golden Pin Salon is organized by the Golden Pin Design Award and the Golden Pin Concept Design Award in association with the Taiwan Design Center, Beijing Industrial Design Promotion Organization, the Shanghai Creative Industrial Center, and the Shenzhen Industrial Design Profession Association (SIDA). Dates and locations for future salons in 2015 include: Macau - July 18; Nanjing - July 20; and Shanghai - July 22. Two Salons will also be held in Beijing and Shanghai in August. For more information, follow the Golden Pin Design Award on Weibo:  www.weibo.com/u/5181797743 (Chinese language). For more on the topics explored in the Salon series, visit Perspectives ( www.designperspectives.org), a bilingual (English and Traditional Chinese) online archive that collects the thoughts of international design industry professionals on huaren design.

While the Golden Pin Design Award 2015 officially closed its entry period on June 30, a new award under the Golden Pin banner has opened its doors to entries from the international design community. The Golden Pin Concept Design Award 2015, with a total of NT$1 million in cash prizes, is open to international students, professionals, groups, or companies in any design discipline. There is no entry fee. Entrants must consider one or more philosophies, ideologies, principles, or areas of thought attributable to huaren culture or lifestyles in their submitted concepts, and the designs must not yet be available in the market. The entry period for the Golden Pin Concept Design Award 2015 award closes on July 31.To enter, visit:  www.goldenpin.org.tw/en/pgpnyh.asp.

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