Designing the Future
Since 2003, Electrolux has tasked design students around the world: can you dream up a concept that’s relevant right now, yet paves the way for enhancing life in the future? The champion wins €10,000 and a six-month paid internship at an Electrolux global design centre; several past finalists currently work at these centres.
In the last two years, there have been more than 70 short-listed submissions from Asia, including one from Singapore and one from Korea reaching the finals. This year, 25-year-old Korean Jeongbin Seo responded to the “Happy Healthy Kids” theme with his Quadruple H (Q.H), an air purifier shaped like a hula hoop and powered by motion, which also doubles up as decoration. The Q.H, which stands for Health, Happiness, Hologram, Hula-hoop, is Seo’s very first design work, and has made it through six grueling months of judging, beating out more than 100 concepts to emerge as one of six 2015 finalists.
The Q.H cleans polluted air via an air inlet while in motion like a hula-hoop – the amount of exercise done can also be tracked. When not in use, the Q.H projects user-selected hologram images via a smartphone application, so it never stays stagnant as a white elephant.
Before the overall winner is declared via a live webcast on 15 October, we caught up with the HyupSung University industrial design student to find out more about the inspiration behind Q.H.
Q. Why did you decide to major in industrial design?
A. My parents are artists specialising in Oriental paintings and I have been drawing since I was little. It was a very natural thing for me to choose a career that would involve creativity.
Q. Why did you join the Electrolux Design Lab competition?
A. After returning to university from military service, I was looking for contests to stretch my artistic inspiration, and chose the Electrolux Design Lab because I really liked its future-oriented spirit. I’ve been enjoying the experience so far.
Q. How long did it take for you to conceptualise and put together your entry?
A. It took me one month.
Q. How do you feel about being one of the six finalists?
A. It’s awakened me to the fact that I can really make a career out of design, and quelled any doubts I might have had about becoming a “real” designer. I eagerly hope for this competition to be a life-changing opportunity.
Q. Why is it important to design products for kids?
A. Children equal the future – the more we design to provide better environments for children to flourish, the brighter the future becomes.