Interview with Yu Hsuan Liao, Founder of Ding Yong Culture and Creative Ltd., Taiwan

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Yu Hsuan Liao

Liao’s designs often focus on the essence of life and time itself, allowing people to look at things from a new perspective.

Interview with the 2020 MUSE Design Awards Winner - Yu Hsuan Liao

1Please give us a brief bio of yourself and your design background.

I came from a film and television program producer, and later established my own company, wanting to redefine the tradition of lantern festivals in Taiwan

2What made you become/why did you choose to become a designer/artist?

In the process of making programs, I gradually became interested in organizing activities. I like people to gather because of my installation, and then to communicate.

3Tell us more about your business/company, job profile, and what you do.

I am the founder of the company. When Dingyong was founded, I was thinking about how to combine and innovate to redefine a lantern festival of the future.

4What does “design” mean to you?

The process of constructing something from nothing, arranging things in a balanced way, and being able to radiate thoughts from it.

5What’s your favorite kind of design and why?

I like designs that focus on the essence of things and are honored in time. I also like designs that combine multimedia and make people’s eyes shine. The former allows people to breathe and relax in life, while the latter allows people to look at things from a new perspective.

6To you, what makes a “good” design?

Design works usually have a strong purpose, which may be for the structure of functional design, or the layout of the design for conveying information. As long as it can achieve the purpose and have a sense of beauty, it is a good design.

7Describe your design style and its main characteristics.

I've been trying new styles all the time... I like the coexistence of simplicity and colorfulness, and the creative light installation can express this very well.

8Tell us about your design process.

When communicating with the creative team in the early stage of planning, big issues appeared in the gray area between the "impression of the established lantern festival" and the "art creation". After all, this is an activity derived from folk beliefs, not a permanent installation of art. If people can’t understand it, it’s meaningless. However, how to present the message through the work is the subject of our discussion.

We only have less than a month to execute, and after the completion of our respective discussions, we held workshops and other activities to allow local residents to participate together in order to complete these large-scale works in such a short time.

9Do you think your country and its cultural heritage has an impact on your design process?

Design is often restricted by environmental factors of local politics and traditional customs. Compared with neighboring countries, Taiwan has a relatively open environment and folk customs. Under such an environmental background, Taiwanese designers can carry out more diverse designs. The design can have more bold attempts.

10Congratulations! As the winner of the 2020 MUSE Design Awards, what does it mean to you and your company and team to receive this award distinction?

Thanks to the affirmation of the MUSE Design Awards, which motivated the design direction of the team and boosted the morale of the company.

11Can you explain a bit about the winning work you entered into the 2020 MUSE Design Awards, and why you chose to enter this project?

The former Taiwan Lantern Festival has become a high-traffic cultural consumption with its mass and entertainment nature. The two trajectories of the Lantern Festival are based on "agricultural life" and "civil participation" as well as the sparks of creators, with "light" and "shadow" Develop an artistic context that combines high efficiency and creativity. Among them, the concept of natural symbiosis and environmental sustainability is crucial.

I think this is an exhibition that selects and gathers artists based on the concept, and then integrates and presents it. The focus is on the meaning of the light area.

12What was the biggest challenge with this project?

How to strike a balance between the traditional light environment that civil servants want and the curator’s definition of Lishan and Lantern Festival is a challenge. In recent years, the Taiwan Lantern Festival has gradually moved towards the presentation of landscape art, installation art, and light sculpture art. Interspersing with the traditional lanterns, I wanted it to be compatible in the same lighting area.

13How has winning an Award developed your practice/career?

Projects recognized by international awards will effectively help us to promote our own business. I will put the MUSE logo in the company's promotional videos, which will give us more opportunities to launch more complete and harmonious design works.

14What are your top three (3) favorite things about the industry?

1. Efficiency

2. Various styles blooming

3. Influence

15What makes your country specifically unique in the design industry?

Compatible and unconstrained.

16Where do you see the evolution of design industry going over the next 5-10 years?

In Taiwan, young people are gradually picking up Taiwan’s history and culture, and will gradually merge in the localization in retrospect.

In the global design wave, I am happy to see it happen.

17 If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring MUSE Design Awards submitter, what advice would you give them?

See more and try to do your best to broaden your horizons and realize your various ideas.

18Tell us something you have never told anyone else.

In fact, when civil servants were planning the Lishan Lantern District, they wanted to promote the agricultural product "black-winged kite rice", as well as other local agricultural products.

19Who has inspired you in your life and why?

Sculptor, pattern designer, and even a wedding designer, I can see from their works how the installation will be completed in the future.

20What is your key to success? Any parting words of wisdom?

Believe that you have to look at things from various angles.

21Do you have anything else you would like to add to the interview?

Thanks again to MUSE for awarding our team the Platinum Award.

Winning Entries

Taiwan Lantern Festival 2020 - Born On The Island | 2020

Taiwan Lantern Festival 2020 - Born On The Island | MUSE Design Awards

Taiwan Lantern Festival is one of the annual events, attracting million people. To catch the attention, the team is delivering the value...
(read more at MUSE Design Awards)

Ding Yong Culture and Creative Ltd.

Ding Yong focuses in brightening the night skies of the Taiwan Lantern Festival and Light Festival for many years, creating atmospheric lights in the dark.