Julia Anastasopoulos, a young designer from the Western Cape, whose interest in green design was recognised during her participation in the 2008 Eskom Energy Efficient Lighting Design Competition, is still carrying the torch for energy and resource efficient design concepts by launching her own brand.
The Peg Light by Julia Anastasopoulos
“Being part of the Eskom lighting design competition had a significant impact on my life. Since participating in the competition, I have been developing my ideas and honing my skills and I’m thrilled that I will soon be launching my own brand of illustrated printed wallpaper which will be marketed and sold predominantly online. Ultimately, my goal is to have my own shop front one day,” says Ms Anastasopoulos, whose innovative spherical light made from colourful clothes pegs and cable-ties earned her kudos in the lighting design competition.
The Peg Light also went on to be a finalist in SOUTH – an exhibition in association with the Design Indaba. Since then it has travelled to Lisbon, Portugal to represent South African Design in Experimenta 2009 as part of the “Timeless Exhibition”.
Ms Anastasopoulos’ design was inspired by the idea that, with a bit of imagination, everyday objects, though seemingly unimportant, do play a vital role in people’s lives and can have multiple uses, other than their intended purpose.
“These objects are designed for function and practicality and I find it interesting to find other uses for them and as a medium in a product-design forum. By using the pegs' primary ability to attach, the design happened quite organically. My peg light is all about re-using and re-inventing. The light can be mounted on a wall, hung from a ceiling or converted into a standing lamp,” she says.
Anastasopoulos supports the idea of sustainable design and recognises that designers have a role to play in encouraging people to make “green” choices.
“I strive for sustainability and use local producers and suppliers wherever and whenever possible. It is very exciting that such effective energy-efficient light bulbs have been developed, enabling designers to be almost limitlessly creative when it comes to lighting design and solutions,” says Ms Anastasopoulos, who is responsible for the large-scale public murals for the My City bus station, outside the Civic Centre, commissioned by the City of Cape Town.
Andrew Etzinger, Senior General Manager of Integrated Demand Management (IDM) at Eskom and the champion for energy efficient lighting design says Ms Anastasopoulos’ participation in the competition is an accolade that she will be able to continue leveraging in her career.
“Many of our previous entrants have used the programme as a launch pad into energy efficient design and development in South Africa’s increasingly eco-conscious residential sector. Of course, it is enormously satisfying to hear stories of previous contestants exploring the frontiers of green design and becoming ambassadors for energy and resource efficient technologies and concepts.
“This serves as confirmation that the competition is not only a channel for uncovering innovation, but also a catalyst for change.”
Since 1999, the biennial competition has helped mobilise transformation in the market, motivating lighting designers, architects and interior designers to use energy efficient lighting in their portfolios, and inspiring consumers to adopt innovative and green lighting concepts.
Entries are now open for the 2012 Eskom Energy Efficient Lighting Design Competition and everyone with a flair for design, a love of lights or a passion for the planet is invited to submit their ideas before midnight on Friday, August 31, 2012. There is a total of R214,000 in prize money to be won, as well as the opportunity to be honoured with the prestigious Sparks Trophy.
The categories are:
Category A – Residential Luminaire Design, for full-time students at tertiary institutions including universities, colleges, design centres and schools of design.
Category B – Innovative Energy Efficient Lighting Design, for professional graphic designers, electrical engineers, product designers and researchers.
Special Awards – Most Promising Young Designer, for secondary school learners.
Special Awards – Most Promising Designer, to honour amateur designers.