2008 ARIDO Awards of Excellence honour the best of Ontario interior design

The Association of Registered Interior Designers of Ontario (ARIDO) has announced the winners of its 24th annual ARIDO Awards of Excellence, a prestigious program that honours innovation, creativity and professional achievement in the province’s interior design industry. Judges of this year’s entries recognized 23 designs from 11 separate categories. Among the winning entries were six Awards of Excellence and 17 Awards of Merit.

“The outstanding work of this year’s awards recipients is representative of the vast amount of interior design talent across the industry and the province,” says Franca Rezza, president of ARIDO. “The Association values the contribution of its members to public and private spaces. Our designs emphasize the need for inspiring spaces in all realms of the built environment and build public awareness of our professional capabilities.”

In their submissions, entrants were asked to consider existing design elements, budget and project objectives, strategies employed, overall creativity, examples of project results, client feedback and elements of sustainability. The projects of this year’s recipients speak to every space imaginable, demonstrating that good design can be employed wherever we live, work and play. From hospitality to health care, corporate to residential, this is demonstrated in the by each of the six Awards of Excellence.

Three of these projects highlighted the outstanding work in the corporate sector, with two awards given to Dean Matsumoto of Kasian Architecture Interior Design & Planning Ltd. for his work on their Toronto office and within it, a special collaborative work and social gathering space that is anchored by a stainless steel light table, known as its Touchdown area. Also representing excellence in corporate interior design is Sharon Martens of Martens Group Licensed Interior Design Studio, whose work for the Pengrowth Corporation illustrates an unexpected contemporary approach to embracing traditionalism in the workplace. Martens also received an Award of Merit for custom lighting design that was also created for the space.

Remarkable work also emerged from the residential sector, with two projects looking to enhance the way we live. An Award of Excellence went to Connie Braemar’s (of Connie Braemar Design) spectacularly executed Osler Chalet, which married and transported two log cabins. Another Award of Excellence went to Elaine Cecconi for her own private residence that is indicative of her talents and those of her firm Cecconi Simone. Her business partner Anna Simone also took home an Award of Merit in the residential category, for her Carport and Green Roof project.

The sixth Award of Excellence was handed out to Fang-Pin Lee of Reich + Petch Design International, for Butterflies and Plants, Partners in Evolution. This educational institution playfully tackles the biology of butterflies and through its design, engages adults and children alike.

For a full list of all ARIDO Award of Merit winners, please visit www.arido.ca.