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August 29, 2017    
Nippon Paint hosts AYDA 2016 Regional Learning Programme

Nippon Paint recently hosted a 3-day Asia Young Designer Award (AYDA) 2016 Regional Learning Programme in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, which serves as the grand finale where the winners of each the 15 participating country compete for the prestigious regional Platinum award. The event was attended by approximately 300 design students and leading industry professionals from across Asia.
     The AYDA Regional Learning Programme also provides various platforms for all participating winners such as coaching sessions, study tours as well as sharing sessions with some of Asia’s leading design practitioners. This year, various industry experts ranging from architects to urban planners and entrepreneur joined forces to speak at the 9th installment of AYDA 2016 Regional Learning Programme, comprising Dato’ Dr Ar Ken Yeang (Malaysia), Ar Colin Seah (Singapore), Ar Sibarani Sofian (Indonesia) and Malaysian entrepreneur Mr Ee Soon Wei, all of whom shared their experiences and interpretation of AYDA 2016’s theme of “Be Bold. Be Free. Be You.”.
     The keynote speaker of the day, Dato’ Dr Ar Ken Yeang who is the Principal of Hamzah & Yeang, spoke on the importance of seamless integration of 4 key elements in a design concept – nature, human, water and built environment. He also showcased the various projects that he had accomplished throughout the span of his career. Dato’ Dr Ar Ken Yeang is best known for his signature green architecture and masterplanning, differentiated from his peers by his ecological-based approach. Recently the UK Guardian newspaper named this Malaysian as one of the 50 individuals who could save the planet. 
     Other speakers during the AYDA Learning Programme include Ar Colin Seah, Founder and Director of Ministry of Design, and recipient of Singapore’s highest design accolade, the President’s Design award. He is also a two-time Grand Prize Winner of the Gold Key Award. He spoke on his journey researching design pedagogy at the National University of Singapore’s Department of Architecture while also serving as a design critic. He truly resonated with the AYDA 2016’s theme of “Be Bold. Be Free. Be You.”, as his ideations are truly bold in its narrative, some of which include the Macalister Mansion and the Loke Thye Kee Residences in Penang. 
     Ar Sibarani Sofian, Director of Urban+ and part of the design planning team executing national scale projects such as the Soekarno Hatta International Airport spoke on his passion on creating sustainable townships based on an amalgamated multi-disciplinary approach between urban development and architecture, while the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the acclaimed Art Printing Work, Mr Ee Soon Wei, shared on how he transformed the underutilised factory floor of his grandfather’s printing business into what is now Kuala Lumpur’s most attractive, collaborative work space, F&B and event space location. 
     Twenty-three year old Malaysian, Chai Min Li, was crowned the Platinum Winner for the Interior Design Category of the regional instalment of AYDA 2016, beating 14 other countries in Asia, with her concept of “The Common Place: Regeneration of Pudu Market”, taking home the USD1,000 prize. 
     The Platinum Winner of the Architecture Category is twenty-five year old, Ueda Mitsumori, whose concept idea of “The Old Matsuo River School” looks at a seamless integration of the old town with the new town, through building schools on the site replicating the path where the river used to flow. This paves way for the city to celebrate its past and the traditional way of life yet embracing an amalgation with modernity – bringing out the true, unique characteristics of the Izumi City in Osaka. 
     Yeung Sum Yi, Sammy from Hong Kong Polytechnic University, who represented the territory at AYDA in Yogyakarta. “I’m happy to meet the friends overseas and the professionals give me the valuable comment.”
     AYDA was first introduced in Malaysia in 2008 and has witnessed increased popularity year after year. In its first year, AYDA received 87 entries, and in 2016 alone has received more than 4,500 entries. This premier Award for interior design and architecture students is currently being competed in countries namely Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Taiwan, India, Sri Lanka and Papua New Guinea. The theme for AYDA 2016, “Be Bold, Be Free, Be You.” rewards participants to get out of their comfort zones, to strike out on new paths, and deliver original and unique design identities without boundaries.
     “What we provide is a platform that allow young designers to gain much more than just a trophy. Some gained friendships that will last a life time, some were revealed key strengths they never knew about themselves, while some absorbed knowledge and perspectives from industry speakers around the Asia region,” said Mr Wee Siew Kim, Chief Executive Officer of NIPSEA Group.
     “Beyond the competition, we have brought together a group of passionate people, be it from academia, to industry partners carrying the spirit of AYDA. We even have judges who had been with us year on year since we first started. On top of this, we have coaches that meticulously mentor each and every participant to further sharpen their presentation skills and prepare them not just for this regional competition, but also for the real-world,” said Mr Wee.
     The 3-day AYDA 2016 Regional Learning Programme concluded with a tour of Borobudur, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the world’s largest Buddhist temple. Constructed in the 9th century, Borobudur consists of a central dome which is surrounded by 72 Buddha statues, each seated inside a perforated stupa. The students and judges then visited the Ullen Sentalu Museum, a Javanese culture and art museum which houses relics and artefacts from royal palaces (known as ‘kraton’ in Javanese). Upon entering the museum area surrounded by lush greenery with a massive banyan tree in sight, the entourage were transported to an ancient Javanese Kingdom era which reflects the grandeur of the Mataram dynasty, one of the most powerful dynasty in Central Java.  

About NIPSEA Group
Founded by Mr Goh Cheng Liang in 1962 in Singapore, NIPSEA is one of the largest scale coating group in Asia, being known in the marketplace by its brand “Nippon Paint” and responsible for the operation and development of Nippon Paint in Asia.
     For more information, visit: www.nipponpaint.com

AYDA 2016 Learning Programme

AYDA 2016 Study Tour at Borobudur, Yogyakarta

Platinum Winners AYDA 2016 Chai Min Li, Malaysia (left) and Ueda Mitsumori, Japan

Coaching Session for AYDA 2016