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IDEAschool graduate named as finalist in national design competition

September 29, 2023

EIT | Te Pūkenga graduate Yenny Lopdell has been named as a finalist in the Best Design Awards.

A recent IDEAschool graduate at EIT | Te Pūkenga has been named as a finalist in New Zealand’s premier design competition.

Yenny Lopdell and her sustainable spatial screen ‘Sketsel’ is a finalist in the Student Product Category at The Best Design Awards by the Designers Institute of New Zealand.

The Best Design Awards is an annual showcase of excellence in Graphic, Spatial, Product, Digital and Moving Image along with three special awards – Value of Design, Public Good and Toitanga.

“It means a lot to me to be recognised as a finalist. At the beginning of the project, I would have never thought I would be entering, let alone become a finalist in any awards.”

‘Sketsel’ was Yenny’s final third year project.

Originally from Indonesia, Yenny incorporated the Javanese Batik pattern of ‘Parang’ into her work. The end result is a spatial screen using paper waste, which is formed together by the arrangement of intertwining diagonal S shapes.

“The screen is precisely cut with laser technology and assembled by hand. Lighting is also deeply considered so that when backlit, the complex spatial interplay diffuses light creating a range of exciting and dynamic tones on the screen surfaces.”

The 42-year-old graduated with a Bachelor of Creative Practice (Design) earlier this year and is now working as a Graphic Designer at Napier-based design agency Band.

She first started the level 4 certificate in 2017 before embarking on the degree.

“I had been searching for what I wanted to do, and I came to the right place. EIT has helped me find my passion and understand how I can use where I’m from and extract that and incorporate it into my work. They have helped bring me out from no one to someone.”

Yenny says EIT | IDEAschool design lecturer James Smith encouraged her to make a submission.

“James was really helpful and guided me through the submission process.”

She is now planning to gift her screens to EIT | Te Pūkenga and is exploring what the possibilities are for Sketsel.

“I’m hoping this screen will inspire other students. The last project is important for the future and can open so many doors.”

EIT | Te Pūkenga Design Lecturer James Smith said: “Everyone at IDEAschool is immensely proud of Yenny and her remarkable accomplishments with her graduate project, ‘Sketsel’.”

“We witnessed her unwavering enthusiasm, effort, and dedication in creating these elegantly crafted, sustainable spatial object designs. Yenny’s well deserved recognition as a finalist in the Best Awards and as a top emerging designer in Aotearoa is a testament to her outstanding talent and commitment.”

 The Awards will be held on October 6.