Erinn Goh talks design philosophy, advice to first year BIA students & the role research has played on her graduation scheme.
Describe your proposal in 3 key words:
Awe-inspiring, healthy, and sculptural
What is your design philosophy?
I believe that good design does not constitute of just the physical aesthetics but rather takes into account the psychology of how people subconsciously react and interact within a space. In other words, the purpose of a design is not just to “look pretty”. It is created for the people, and thus must be appreciated and understood by those who use it. Designers need to possess the ability to anticipate how an individual will circulate, interact and view the space even before they are aware themselves. I also believe that there is no one true, finite design solution for a space. Believing that design is always open to improvement motivates me to constantly search for more innovative design solutions.
What advice would you give to any first years / things you wish you knew that could have benefited you:
I think the most useful piece of advice is don’t be afraid to fail. Take risks with your design and invest time and effort into each risk you take. I remember in third year while getting critiqued by my tutor a week before final submission, I had expressed that I was scared that my design wasn’t going to work. My tutor encouraged me to take the risk, believe in my design and then responded, “If you’re going to fail, fail with a bang”. As humorous as that sounds, it has been the most useful piece of advice a tutor has ever given me. Be brave and confident with your risky ideas. Communicating your ideas with confidence allows your tutor, and in time, your potential future clients, to feel that they can trust you. In saying that, there always has to be some form of calculation and rational thinking in your risk taking. Don’t invest your time designing a room that’s 500mm tall!
What role did research have on your scheme?
I would have to say that research played an extremely vital part in the cultivating of my scheme. Apart from the technical aspects of research that allows my design to comply to Australian standards, research into both the functional and the conceptual realm creates depth in my design for the White Bay Power Station. Research enabled me to understand the physical properties of water and the health benefits it has on all five of our senses. Exploring the chemical make-up of water further inspires certain forms in my design. Understanding the geographical location of WBPS and the importance of Sydney’s Harbour in the tourism industry further heightens the importance of water in Sydney’s economy and unique identity of the city.
To find out more about Erinn's work please head to: https://imprint.be.unsw.edu.au/projects/erinn-goh