Sustainable architecture and interior design have become more relevant these days with the concern over climate change. But contemporary architects and interior designers are not just paying homage to Mother Nature through their works. They come up with eco-efficient designs that ultimately benefit humanity. The same trend in the Philippines has strong support from businesses and the academe.
“At Nippon Paint, we are passionate in encouraging the design leaders of tomorrow to create innovations that address crucial needs well beyond expectations,” Michael Chung, general manager of Nippon Paint (Coatings) Philippines, said at the recent media launch of the 2016 Asia Young Designer Award (AYDA) at the Manila Peninsula in Makati City.
AYDA is an annual architecture and interior design contest for students that is organized and sponsored by Nippon Paint since 2008 starting in Malaysia, where the mother company is based. Formerly named Nippon Paint Young Designer Award (NPYDA), it was re-launched as AYDA this year as the competition turned Asia-wide to include national editions in 15 Asian countries. Nippon Paint (Coatings) Philippines has been conducting the contest in the country since 2014.
Through AYDA, Nippon Paint advocates design innovation along the principles of sustainable development.
“A good design is an enabler for sustainable future, helping people to become healthier and more productive,” according to Chung. “It also inspires creative thinking leading towards more innovations that make people’s lives better.”
Endorsing the practice of sustainable design in the Philippines are institutional supporters of AYDA such as the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP), Philippine Institute of Interior Designers (PIID), the Council of Interior Design Educators, college of fellows, and the Council of Deans and Heads of Architecture Schools in the Philippines, and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).
At the AYDA event, UAP National President Guillermo Hisancha, said the youth of tomorrow should design society in a way that it will address real world challenges like population increase and urbanization. Dr. Vincent Louie Tan, executive director for education PIID, added that designers are responsible for putting the welfare of the people and nature in mind.
Meanwhile, students are learning to put a touch of humanity in design. Jose Agustin Ricarte, winner in the architecture category of the NPYDA 2015, admitted learning so much about designing not just for himself, courtesy of the mentorship and educational trip in Bangkok, Thailand offered by the competition to national winners.
“In school, we were tested on how we will design for ourselves. But in this competition, we were challenged to design for others with heart,” said the UST architecture student at the AYDA event. “That really changed my design philosophy and process. It’s not only purely for my interest alone but also for who would be using the project.”
Ricarte’s mentor, architect Charisse Ong, said that local schools support humanity in design.
“Before, when I was a student myself, architecture was for the architects, for their egos, for their portfolios. But what’s happening now is that students are being taught to design with a heart, design with a purpose,” shared Ong. “Not to know what to design but to start off with why; why are you designing this?”
CHED National Capital Region Director Dr. Leonida Calagui said AYDA has the full support of the agency and called on schools to motivate their students to join the competition to also help them prepare for the professional world.
Under AYDA rules, designs must adhere to this year’s theme of “Be Bold, Be Free, Be You.” To win the top prize of P50,000.00 cash, internship and learning abroad, interior design contestants must show the most unique way of improving space and the lives of people who use and move in it while participating architecture students should present in their entry the best solution to problems on human habitation. The criteria include judging entries based on the environmental impact of the design’s materials, maintenance, energy usage, water and waste management. Another criteria is the creative use of color through Nippon Paint products.
The deadline for submission of entries to the 2016 AYDA Philippines is on Oct. 15.
For more information on the contest mechanics and to download an entry kit, visit
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