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Australians of Greek heritage named finalists in Victorian Premier’s Design Awards




The finalists have officially been announced for the 2023 Victorian Premier’s Design Awards and among the list are at least five Australians with Greek heritage.

These awards were established by the Victorian Government in 1996, and ever since, they have been utilised to highlight and celebrate local design capability.

Finalists in the Architectural Design category

  • Pitch Music and Arts Festival – Main Stage
Pitch Music and Arts Festival
The Pitch Music and Arts Festival Stage. Photo: Victorian Premier’s Design Awards.

The Greek Australian, Ambrose Zacharakis, alongside Henry Howson and the Untitled Group were announced finalists for the Architectural Design category.

They designed Pitch Music and Arts Main Stage – a festival located at the foothills of the Grampians National Park, home to the traditional custodians of the Djab Wurrung and Eastern Maar Peoples.

Hosting headline performers, and the backdrop to the Welcome to Country Ceremony, the stage is the centrepiece of the festival.

The stage design is an arch that appears to be subtracted from a rectilinear form, the central opening focuses the audience on both the performer and the landscape beyond, creating a unique experience. The contrast of solid and void, set against the unfettered nature gives the stage a striking presence.

  • Lilydale and Mooroolbark Stations
Lilydale and Mooroolbark Stations.

Another Greek Australian finalist in the Architectural Design category includes Kyriacou Architects, who were nominated alongside BKK Architects, Jacobs and ASPECT Studios.

They completed two new train stations at the terminus of the Lilydale Railway Line. Part of the Victorian Government’s Level Crossing Removal Project, the new stations at Lilydale and Mooroolbark are siblings – unique, but with a shared material identity.

Both stations reactivate the public realm, reinstating cross-corridor pedestrian, cyclist and motorist connections – severed since the railway’s construction in 1882.

The new stations are supported by a new shared user path, reconnecting Melbourne to the Yarra Valley via the Warburton Rail Trail.

Finalist in the Communications Design category

  • Australian Open – Infosys: Reimagining Tennis with Technology
Australian Open – Infosys: Reimagining Tennis with Technology.

Greek Australian Sandy Tsindos – Account Director (Charles Elena) and Tomas Palazzo – Creative Director (Charles Elena) were also named finalists for the Victorian Premier’s Design Awards.

They created an Infosys ground-breaking immersive 3D billboard for the 2023 Australian Open at the heart of Melbourne CBD.

As the long-standing digital innovation partner for the Australian Open, Infosys had the opportunity to improve its brand awareness during the 2023 tournament in January. The result, a 236sqm immersive, 3D anamorphic billboard in the heart of Melbourne (Bourke Street and Swanston Street). Coincidently, just like tennis, it turned heads.

Finalists in the Student Design category

  • Ngulu Djeembana (The Gathering of Voices)
Ngulu Djeembana (The Gathering of Voices).

Stasinos Mantzis, a RMIT Studio Design Leader was named a finalist, along with Shao Tian Teo, Taylor Ristevski, Alexander Barr, Dr Christine Phillips (RMIT Design Studio Leader), Professor N’arwee’t Carolyn Briggs AM (Boonwurrung Elder/RMIT Design Studio Leader), and RMIT University for their research on First Nations designs and culture.

Ngulu Djeembana is an exploration into the multifaceted and deep culture of Victoria’s First Nations custodians. The formal qualities of the building and its surroundings embed the specificity of Country through design, celebrating cultures of the Eastern Kulin Nations.

The project envelopes poetic processes through Songlines, engagement and architectural disruptions as a way of looking towards Yirramboi. Their research and processes intertwines public and indigenous knowledge provided by Boonwurrung Elder, N’arwee’t Carolyn Briggs.

  • Spot

Alesia Tsolakis was named a finalist in the student design category for her handheld melanoma detection device monitoring and recording visual symptoms in changing moles.

Melanoma, a type of skin cancer that develops in skin cells called melanocytes, is projected to be the third most common cancer in Australia. Despite its prevalence, individuals can feel uncertain to independently identify symptoms. In response, she designed ‘SPOT,’ a self-contained mole monitoring device. Assisted by a removable wall mount and digital application, the user is able to compare moles easily at any time, even on difficult to reach places on the body.

Source: Victorian Premier’s Design Awards.

*Please note: If you believe you should be on this list of recognised Greek Australians, please send an email to info@foreignlanguage.com.au.

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