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W Taipei and Taiwan Design Center present igniting innovative sparks with food and design

Colour  Light bulb food
W Taipei and Taiwan Design Center (TDC) launched the “Food Re-design TDC X W TAIPEI” project on July 4. The project is co-organized by TDC and W Taipei, and headed by W Taipei’s Executive Chef Colin Chun. Chef Chun leads a team of four local and international advisors, including Dutch designer Annelies Hermsen, Editor-in-Chief of GQ Magazine Blues To (Du Tsu-Ye), Taipei InDesign Producer/Host Stephanie Wen, and Tainaner Ensemble Co-Artistic Director Tsai Pao-Chang, and nine Taiwanese designers to ignite new sparks between food and design.

In the next four months, designers will use W Taipei’s “the kitchen table” restaurant as their stage to showcase their creativities. Never before has the world seen a collaborative project of this concept and scale, and it also marks the first time Taiwanese designers, the 5-star hotel executive chef, and the international food designer come together in an interdisciplinary project. Moreover, with the world-renowned enterprise acting as the channel, Taiwan’s ubiquitous design energy is put on full display for the rest of the world to see.  

The main focus of the “Food Re-design TDC X W TAIPEI” project is to combine the popular global trend in culinary art and aesthetical concepts of design. Nine designers will join forces with 5-star celebrity chef Colin Chun, who previously served international film stars in Hugh Jackman and Orlando Bloom, as well as supermodel Miranda Kerr. The team will use “Light/Healthy Food” as the theme, put forth innovative design proposals for utensils, space, and dining style of W Taipei’s “the kitchen table”, and turn it into a theatrical space that meets the needs of the life of ordinary people, allowing all guests of the restaurant to transform into the most outstanding actors while showcasing the most relaxed sides of themselves.  

At the press conference on July 4, General Manager Cary M. Gray of W Taipei, Consultant Tony Chang of TDC, Producer/Host Stephanie Wen of Taipei InDesign, and nine emerging designers that represent Taiwan, including Chou Yu-Jui, who has won numerous international awards and is the representative of the local crafts design industry, Spencer Hung, the creative manager of famous domestic household supplies brand JIA, as well as Balance Wu, Alice Wang, Jerry Shiang, Jimmy Chang, Kevin Lin, Lance Han, and Cheng Hung, who are all decorated designers in Taiwan, all were presented to witness the launch of the collaborative project!  

“It’s my pleasure to work with Taiwan Design Center for the 4th consecutive year.” shared Mr. Cary M. Gray, General Manager of W Taipei, “Design is the most powerful passion point of W Hotels. I am looking forward to seeing the fabulous finale of Food Re-design by the talented Taiwan designers and our executive chef Colin in the end of this year.”  

As the icon of trendy design hotels, W Taipei has strived to realize all kinds of experimental proposals in recent years, developing a wide range of interdisciplinary cooperative projects based on the core concepts of music, design, fashion and gourmet foods. At the press conference, W Taipei Executive Chef Colin Chun and Dutch food designer Annelies Hermsen put on display the spark and energy created by food and design coming together in a special collaboration – “Edible Light Bulbs” which are inspired by Annelies’s lighting hometown Eindhoven, Netherlands and Colin’s signature light food. Also, the team of advisors from different disciplines and countries will lead the designers onto an exploration of Taiwan’s design and food culture, using design to transcend the ordinary action of “eating” into a kind of elegance—to exchange and share, entertain and cure, and further explore the Asian culture of living embodied within.  

In recent years, Industrial Development Bureau, Ministry of Economic Affairs, has worked hard to showcase Taiwan’s design industry on the global stage. Since Taipei hosted IDA Congress and Word Design Expo in 2011, W Taipei has been an important partner in promoting Taiwan’s design industry; it helps to accommodate international organizations, partners, and domestic and foreign participants, and provides resources and a stage that allow Taiwan’s design industry to show its strengths and energy, and increase its global exposure. Last year, works of two designers participating in the “2013 Trash Re-design TDC X W Taipei” project was chosen by W Taipei and became items of procurement of the international hotel chain, generating orders worth over TWD2 million. As a continuation of last year’s successful experience, TDC cooperates with W Taipei once again. In addition to increasing the visibility of Taiwan’s local designers in the global society and creating more opportunities for designers to showcase themselves and to interact with the rest of the world, TDC and W Taipei also aim to assist Taiwan’s design industry and designers to further enhance design capacity, and help them to explore potential business opportunities.  

Beginning in July, the project will host a four-month design workshop, where TDC, W Taipei, and the designers will focus on the needs of the hotel and develop brand new proposals for dining space and design products. As of now, the achievements of the project are to be unveiled in early November.

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