BIA 2015 winners announced at Sydney InDesign
17 August 2015
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BIA 2015 winners announced at Sydney InDesign

The two winning tapware designs were selected for their innovative approach to water use and unique aesthetic that incorporates technologically advanced features while also addressing users’ modern lifestyle habits.

Industrial designer Michael Wilds has been named winner of the professional category, receiving a $10,000 cash reward and the opportunity to have his tap design prototyped by Italy’s largest tapware manufacturer, Nobilli.

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His winning design, Incline, combines sustainable water use features and a refined sculptural form to create a functional tap. Judges admired the original thinking and space-saving minimalism of the design, which features a timed tap feature and visual countdown element that allows the user to monitor their water use through time. The tap’s striking design attracted the judges’ attention for its sculptural simplicity and architectural form.

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Michael Wilds, winner of the Professional category of BIA 2015

Michael is passionate about sustainability and believes it should be a key feature in all bathroom designs. “By educating and putting into practice sustainable living skills in the bathroom, people can carry that thought process into other rooms of their homes and their daily lives.”

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The tap came to life through initial concept sketches that looked to further refine what was already a sophisticated design. “It was a challenge to come up with something better than what already exists,” said Michael. “It was through changing my mindset, to focus on designing a tap that would encourage sustainability, that I came to my final design.”

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University of New South Wales fourth-year industrial design student, Bryce Beard, is winner of the student category. Bryce’s winning tap design, Totus, will see him receive a $5,000 cash prize and a two-week internship with the design team of world-leading bathroom manufacturer, Roca.

The internship will take place in Barcelona, Spain, where Roca is headquartered and promises to be a career-defining experience for Bryce.

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Bryce Beard, winner of the Student category of BIA 2015

Totus takes its cues from traditional thermostats, with all the temperature adjustment functions combined into one convenient form. Left for hot, right for cold and down to increase the water flow – not to mention you are able customise material and finishes. A special LED light feature provides a visual gauge for the user, with changing colour intensity representing different temperature levels. “It was quite interesting appropriating that function and combining it with technology in a simple, hidden way,” he said.

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“It involved constant collaboration with users, exploring the schematics of how people use and turn a tap mixer. Asking, is it comfortable to use? Is the function and form intuitive to use?”

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“Winning this award really acknowledged that I’m doing something right,” said Bryce. “It encourages me to create better products and to continue to innovate.”

Congratulations to all the finalists this year, and to Michael and Bryce for their amazing efforts in the 2015 Bathroom Innovation Award.

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