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Supporting the future of design

May 05th, 2020

Phoenix Tapware has once again partnered with The Design Files and is the proud sponsor of the Emerging Designer category, which seeks to recognise the achievements of one outstanding designer, architect, independent creative or studio.

At Phoenix Tapware, we are driven by creativity and excellence, which is why we are thrilled to reprise our relationship with The Design Files Awards in 2020.

About the awards

The awards are an extension of The Design Files (TDF) website, which recognises the diversity of creative fields thriving in Australia today.

It’s the only Australian awards program that celebrates the best in residential architecture and interior design, alongside innovative new work by the country’s most talented furniture designers, craft practitioners, textile designers, and more.

Phoenix Tapware’s involvement

In 2020, Phoenix Tapware has again chosen to sponsor the Emerging Designer category due to a shared passion for recognising outstanding talent in the design space, and a desire to help uncover the next generation of Australian designers and creatives.

“The Emerging Designer award in particular is one I am so passionate about, on a personal level. Discovering and supporting designers in the early stages of their career is so rewarding and can make an enormous difference to their success,” says Lucy Feagin, founder, The Design Files.

“With the support of Phoenix Tapware, this award will acknowledge and champion the next generation of talented Australian designers and architects.”

The Design Files AwardsPhoenix Tapware Tapware’s Axia collection won a Red Dot ‘Best of the Best’ in the Bathroom Taps and Shower category

A leader in Australian design and innovation, our in-house design team has over 150 years of experience in the design industry collectively and has been recognised with a string of international awards, most notably a Red Dot ‘Best of the Best’, along with seven iF Product Design awards, seven Red Dot Awards and six Good Design Awards.

Judge’s insight

Ahead of the awards, which will take place in Melbourne in November, Phoenix Tapware caught up with Sophie Gannon, a judge in the Emerging Designer category and founder of the Sophie Gannon Gallery. Read the Q&A below.

The Design AwardsSophie Gannon, founder of Sophie Gannon Gallery and judge at the TDF Design Awards

Congratulations for being selected as one of the judges for TDF Design Awards. Can you share your thoughts on the awards and being a judge of this event?

I am really looking forward to being involved in TDF Design Awards, particularly in the emerging designer category. The design community in Australia is strong (largely due to The Design Files championing design), and the more exposure and opportunities for Australian designers to present their work to a large audience, the greater support for the sector. Both commercially and curatorially. The NGV has been at the forefront, with its own department dedicated to Architecture and Design and I’m delighted to be judging the award alongside Simone LeAmon, Hugh Williamson Curator of Contemporary Design and Architecture at the National Gallery of Victoria.

What are you hoping to see from the emerging designer entries?

Things I haven’t seen before! Designers presenting new ideas, new materials and being brave with their work. And designers from all across Australia – geography is no barrier.

What advice would you give to designers who are starting out in the industry?

Connect with your local design community. There are so many enthusiastic and energetic people in the design community, and opportunities to present work together. With an increasing number of commercial galleries showing an interest in ‘design’, there are more and more opportunities to show your work in a gallery context.

Tell me a little bit about Sophie Gannon Gallery – What led you to open the gallery and how did you get into the design industry?

I began Sophie Gannon Gallery in 2006 after working at Sotheby’s and at Philip Bacon Galleries in Brisbane. I studied Commerce/Arts at The University of Melbourne and while completing my Honours in Art History, I realised that my interest was working with creatives in a business context – that’s how I came to open a commercial art gallery.

I began showing design four years ago as part of the program of the first Melbourne Design Week as presented by the NGV. I have been involved ever since, and we’ve started representing designers alongside our artists. I’ve seen more and more commercial galleries showing an interest in design, a great thing for both the art and design industries.

You can find out more about the awards here.