Tatler Design Awards: What Makes Good Design

Art & Design

February 26, 2018 | BY Hong Xinying

As festivities for this year's Tatler Design Awards draw to a close, we look back and celebrate the qualities that make good design and the meaningful ways that good design can pave the way to a greener future.

What are the qualities that define good design, across the fields of product design, interior design and architecture? As industry insiders would share, thoughtful design should be attentive to aesthetic details, with an intuitive understanding of functional needs and its environmental impact.

Filmed for the Tatler Design Awards, a series of signature events by Singapore Tatler Homes, these interviews feature industrial designer Hunn Wai of Lanzavecchia + Wai, architect Ole Scheeren from Büro Ole Scheeren, architect Richard Hassell of WOHA, Nikki Hunt and Andrea Savage of Design Intervention, and Colin Seah of Ministry of Design.

(Related: Tatler Design Awards: The Winners)

 
What are the qualities that define good design? As these industry insiders would share, thoughtful design pairs an attention to aesthetic details with an intuitive understanding of functional needs.

Thoughtful design is as much about tackling functional and elegant solutions to the needs and requirements of each project, shares architect Richard Hassell. An eco-conscious sensibility shapes the firm’s design philosophy, with notable projects such as the multi-awarded Parkroyal on Pickering providing means of uniting nature with the built environment in an urban landscape. 

One of the rugs Hassell recently designed draws cues to the firm's green ethos. Produced in collaboration with homegrown brand The Rug Maker, its oceanic design were inspired by the natural beauty of the region and was on display at our Neo-Tropical exhibition at National Design Centre. “We’re not so interested in following trends, we’re interested in the idea that aesthetics arises from solving real problems and issues, and there can be a new kind of beauty that arises from it,” says Hassell.

(Related: WOHA On Designing A Greener, More Liveable Singapore)

 
Industry insiders share why green design matters, especially in the time of climate change.

By creating designs that stand the test of time, designers and architects alike can play their part in creating a greener future too. “Good design is so much more about how something looks, or even how it functions,” says Nikki Hunt, principal of Design Intervention. The award-winning practice received the Best Bespoke Project accolade at the Tatler Design Awards.  “If we can pick a design for our client that they absolutely love and treasure, that doesn’t follow fashion, that will last them, that will endure, or we can say evergreen—that has to be the greenest type of design we can give,” she adds.

It's a sentiment that Ole Scheeren, the lead architect behind the mixed-use development Duo concurs with. Located in the bustling Bugis district, the project was lauded as the Architecture of the Year at the Tatler Design Awards, in recognition of its impressive feat of crafting more verdant spaces within the city while adding a distinctive silhouette to the Singapore skyline. “You should not care about the question of 'how to be original' but more about if what you do matters, and if what you do changes things,” says Scheeren.

(Related: Green Living Inspiration: Nature-Inspired Decor, Sustainable Furniture And Eco Travel)

The Tatler Design Awards dinner and closing cocktail were held on 8 and 22 February at Stella at 1-Altitude and National Design Centre respectively; the Neo-Tropical: Designing in the Time of Climate Change exhibition runs from 2-25 February at National Design Centre.

Read more about the Tatler Design Awards coverage in the Singapore Tatler Homes April-May 2018 issue. 

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