28 March 2017
Finding a new home as part of the inaugural INDE Awards, Launch Pad celebrates 13 years of nurturing new Australian design talent.
It all began in 2004 as an exhibition of prototypes by young, emerging designers, held as part of Saturday in Design (now Indesign: The Event). This took advantage of the high volume of industry visitors to Saturday in Design, providing the designers with: invaluable exposure, the opportunity to meet manufacturers and specifiers, gain vital feedback and connect with possible collaborators.
Since then, Launch Pad has developed into an annual competition, exhibition and mentorship program in its own right, propelled by the critical gap in the career path of Australian designers. Louise Olsen, former Launch Pad judge and Director/Founder of Dinosaur Designs explains: “One of the hardest parts of being a designer is being able to produce; finding the right manufacturer that is willing to support you and take the risk.” Launch Pad supports emerging designers at exactly this point, guiding shortlisted entrants to take their concept from prototype to production, a market reality often not covered by tertiary institutions.
Launch Pad attracts over 150 entrants yearly and has helped launch the careers of numerous Australian design greats, and is becoming entrenched as a yearly deadline that emerging designers utilise for producing new work. Its unique mentorship program has attracted the support and personal involvement of notable industry figures, local and international, as well as connecting finalists directly with an exceptional network of commercial suppliers, manufacturers, retailers, consumers and media.
Wanna be part of Launch Pad History?
Past finalists include Australian design royalty such as: