Hot New Things — Kay Tasma, Whitecliffe
Welcome to Hot New Things 2019 – an opportunity to profile a selection of the top design graduates coming out of our tertiary institutions. This week, we speak with Kay Tasma from Whitecliffe.
Bachelor of Fine Art (Graphic Design major)
Whitecliffe College of Art and Design
You completed your full time studies at the end of 2018. Can you tell us what your final year’s project was about and what you focussed on?
My year consisted of plenty of making! I have been working under the umbrella of sustainable design, experimenting with paper making and packaging design. Most of the outcomes ended up being speculative, but I’ve always tended to work in a quite conceptual way. Alongside this I make books using recycled resources and binding.
How has what you’ve recently been working on influenced your design process, and what momentum does it bring to your practice?
I think sustainability and design are two ideas often not spoken about in the same sentence. It’s so important to be thinking of the future of not just fashion or architecture, but also design itself. I’m very interested in design that changes, grows and develops rather than being seen as single use, in the traditional sense of print. Because of this I don’t think I have a defined practice– or at least not yet. I’m curious about the future and how I will be part of it.
What were some of your most exciting discoveries?
Most interesting certainly was designing and making with recycled and used materials. Throughout the year I aimed not to use any new materials, only found, recycled, or things I already owned.
And also some of the challenges along the way?
Probably the same answer! It’s been a funny way to work, but the restriction has given me some interesting outcomes I think. It adds a second layer to what I’ve been making.
What did you love doing most?
I’ve always loved making books. I know it’s getting a bit old fashioned but I still think they’re beautiful as objects in themselves. Also just not being so precious about making one object or outcome has been great. I’ve been experimenting with materials all year, with many, many small projects.
Where do you go to find inspiration (websites, resources, designers, etc)?
In terms of sustainability, it’s been something I had been trying to instigate for the last few years in my work as a concept. Besides this, talking with my lecturers at Whitecliffe– they will often lead me to new books, designers and artists.
Why did you choose to study at your design school, and what do you feel you can take away now that you’ve completed your course?
I chose Whitecliffe for the structure of the 4-year programme. The first year was invaluable to me for learning new skills, being messy and just making. Now, I would say the lecturers here have been such a key part of my time here.
Where to next for you? What does 2019 hold?
Next year I’ll be working at DINZ– where I’ve been working casually for a few years now, so it’s a nice transition. With my free time I’ll be looking to do some more freelance, then afterward I’d like to see where I fit into the design scene in NZ or in the Netherlands.