Students Impress at Furniture Exhibition

Vellum Design Build, a San Luis Obispo design and build firm, partnered with Cal Poly’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) to host the 12th Annual Vellum/CAED Furniture Design Exhibition Oct. 30-31. The results of the judging were announced at a reception on the first day. Davidson Furniture offered their space in Downtown San Luis Obispo, across from the Mission, to house the free public event. 
This juried exhibition featured design-build furniture by CAED students including tables, chairs, light fixtures, and other furniture design solutions. The designs were original and fabricated by the students themselves or in a team. Entries were judged on function, individuality and beauty. The yearly event seeks to celebrate the students’ work and unite the Cal Poly student community with the San Luis Obispo community. 
“Most importantly, it provides a forum for students to exhibit their design passions with enthusiasm and a facility for craft,” notes co-organizer Tom di Santo, an associate professor in the Architecture Department. “In addition, one of the many fortunate by-products of the event has been the bridge built between the college and the community. It is amazing to see so many members of the San Luis Obispo community come out to support our students and the brilliant design work that they produce.”

The panel of judges from all over California is comprised of industrial designers, furniture designers, architects, and a professor of architecture. The jury included Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson of MINARC and mnmMOD in Santa Monica and Iceland. They direct projects in architecture, interiors, furniture and architectural products. The duo also presented as part of the Hearst Lecture Series the day before the competition. 

Other jury members were Steve Lee of Aprilia Design in LA, focusing on architecture and product design; Clare Olsen, of the Cal Poly Architecture Department and principal architect at CoCo; and TJ Esser, a former Cornell University professor who works as a designer at Vellum Design Build. Esser is also a past winner of a Vellum/CAED Furniture competition who earned accolades for his box beam coffee table. 

“Our motivation for this competition is to inspire creative thought and practice, and to challenge students and faculty to the boundaries of material and design,” said Paul Abbott, principal of Vellum Design Build and an alumnus of the Construction Management Department. “We at Vellum Design Build believe good design engages life and facilitates better living. And what better medium to explore the human interface with design than a chair, lamp or a table? All of the participants seemed excited about the opportunity to reinvent the mundane and reveal their individual style and talent.
 And the winners are:
The Space Architects Milano Grand Prize Winner:
  • Kyle Kithas for "Strata"
  • Doug Jackson Studio

The Dr. Daniel Lewis Cradle-to-Cradle Award Winner:

  • Nathan Markwell for "Barstools"
  • Carolina Dayer Studio

The RRM Modern Master Award Winner:

  • Kevin Geraghty for "Phantom" 
  • Jon Foote Studio

The NT 100% Pure Award Winner:

  • Alexander Tam for "Origami Night Stand" 
  • Ansgar Killing Studio

The Vellum Prize Winner (selected by event sponsor Vellum Design Build)

  • Alex Morrison for "Walnut/Cherry Display Table" 
  • Joe Ragsdale's Landscape Architecture Design Studio

The People's Choice Award Winner:

  • Alina Chen for "Cupid" 
  • Doug Jackson Studio

The People's Choice Runner-Up:

  • Tommy Walborn for "Tavola di Vino" 
  • Tom di Santo Studio

The Runner-Up Award Winner:

  • Kyle Rogers for "Untitled no. 13" 
  • Tom di Santo Studio

The Runner-Up Award Winner:

  • Jake Kutzin for "No Name" 
  • Doug Jackson Studio
Link to Winner’s Gallery

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