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Disney Opens Doors For Designers of Tomorrow

UCLA Architecture and Urban Design students are one of six teams selected to travel to Imagineering in Glendale, CA to participate as finalist in Imaginations Design Competition January 27-31, 2014.

Third year M.Arch. I students Krysten Burton, Dema Hajmurad, Derek Woods, Jacob Bloom will present their project for Ilhavela at Rio De Janeiro, Brasil.

Ilhavela at Rio De Janeiro, Brasil - University of California Los Angeles
Krysten Burton, Dema Hajmurad, Derek Woods, Jacob Bloom

Ilhavela is a weekly Illumination Extravaganza that leads visitors and locals on a chase through the city, bringing people together from disparate regions. The event inhabits fifteen existing courtyards within the city of Rio that are underutilized. Each courtyard is transformed with a unique intervention that serves a dual purpose - to act as receptacles for interactive projections, as well as enhance the space of the courtyard for daily use. The intent of Ilhavela is to create both permanent and temporary transformations to the city of Rio de Janeiro that are in harmony with the vibrancy of the city’s culture and history, and seek to infuse it with the delight and collective wonder that Disney inspires.

Learn more about the competition from the Walt Disney Imagineering’s recent media release:

Disney Opens Doors For Designers of Tomorrow

Six college teams travel to Imagineering in Glendale, CA, to participate as finalists in Imaginations Design Competition January 27-31, 2014

December 16, 2013 -- Glendale, CA – Walt Disney Imagineering, the design and development arm of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, has selected the top six finalist teams of its 23rd Imaginations competition. Imaginations is a design competition created and sponsored by Walt Disney Imagineering with the purpose of seeking out and nurturing the next generation of diverse Imagineers. Started in 1992, the program has grown to include a separate version sponsored by Hong Kong Disneyland.

This year’s six teams of finalists represent California Institute of the Arts, Carnegie Mellon University, San Diego State University, Savannah College of Art & Design, University of California Los Angeles, and University of Pennsylvania.

The finalist teams are awarded five-day, all-expense-paid trips to Imagineering in Glendale, Calif., from January 27 to 31, where they will present their projects to Imagineering executives and take part in an awards ceremony on January 31. Finalists also have an opportunity to meet and network with Imagineers, go behind the scenes where Disney magic is created, and interview for paid internships during their visit.

For this year’s Imaginations design competition, students from American universities and colleges were given the following challenge: There are many wonderful urban environments around the world where millions of people live, work and play every day. Select a large and densely populated urban area and design an experience that temporarily or permanently transforms the city for the enjoyment of its citizens and visitors. The experience must take advantage of existing infrastructure, and may be above, below or anywhere in between existing development.

A panel of Imagineering judges applies the same criteria to the entries as they would to their own work that include the team’s ability to collaborate across different disciplines and backgrounds; the mastery of their individual skills; whether the project provides an engaging guest experience; a good understanding of the local and tourist market in the chosen location; the ability to tell a compelling and engaging story; and knowledge and passion for the Disney brand and Walt Disney Imagineering. Additionally, the project should be unique in that it is not limited to what guests already experience at Disney parks and resorts.

A position at Walt Disney Imagineering is often found on surveys of “dream occupations,” and the company uses Imaginations as a way to reach out to the widest possible talent pool for its future. The top three placed teams will be awarded cash prizes, with the first place team receiving $3,000. An additional $1,000 grant will be awarded to the first place team, to be equally divided among its sponsoring universities and/or organizations.

The concepts presented by the finalists cover a wide range of concepts and topics including: a journey back in time to the historically rich city of Rome, a two-week-long festival of cultural exchange between Peru and Bangkok, a train ride through turn of the century New York, a “living library” in San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, a citywide extravaganza set in Rio de Janeiro, and an attraction centered around Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait.

The competition is open to students from colleges and universities in the United States who are juniors, seniors or full-time graduate students; or graduated no earlier than May of this year, and enrolled in courses in Architecture, Animation, Communications, Computer Science, Construction/ Project Management, Creative Writing/ Screenwriting/ Playwriting, Design, Engineering, Fine Arts, Game Design and/or Development, Graphic/ Communications Design, Illustration, Industrial Design, Interactive Media Design, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Media Production (Digital, TV, Film), Theater Design and Production, and Visual Arts.

2014 Imaginations Finalist Teams

Time Embassy – California Institute of the Arts
Lorie Wheeler, Sarah Craig, Kirk Pierron, Amanda Lui

Encompassed by the historically rich city of Rome, Time Embassy invites guests to explore the mystery and wonder of time travel, experience the streets of Rome during the height of the Italian Renaissance, soar over the Colosseum and get the best seats in the house, all within a luxury, time-traveling taxi. The Time Embassy provides a historical perspective on the journey of human progress, and provides an insightful look into the future of earth and its inhabitants.

Antipode - Lima, Peru and Bangkok, Thailand - Carnegie Mellon University Matthew Ho, Angeline Chen, John Brieger, Christina Brant
Unfolding simultaneously in Bangkok and Lima, Antipode (An-Tih-Poh-Dee) is a two- week-long festival of cultural exchange. Bangkok and Lima are antipodal to one another, meaning that they are on the exact opposite ends of the globe. The magical “whispering trees’’ serves as portals between the two cities, and as an entry to the narrative surrounding the festival. Throughout the two weeks, memories “stored” in the tree in Lima will leak out into Bangkok, and vice versa. Steeped in the vibrant culture of these unique locales, Antipode turns the everyday into the extraordinary.

Hidden History: Railway to the Past in New York City, USA -San Diego State University
Ryan Grossheim, Gabrielle Heerschap, Mason Lev, Jordyn Smiley

Hidden History explores previously inaccessible historic spaces in cities around the world. Appealing to both young and old, these experiences aim to combine history with a sense of adventure, while also providing a service to urban communities by bringing hidden architectural treasures back into the public sphere of enjoyment.

In Hidden History: Railway to the Past, guests embark with their Sandhog guide on an exploration of abandoned subway stations and are transported back to October 27, 1904, the opening day of the New York City subway. The 45-minute journey utilizes existing elements of the subway system by staging the experience in two abandoned stations: 18th Street and City Hall, as well as using the 6 train tracks to transport guests between the stations.

Disney's Living Library at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California - Savannah College of Art and Design
Morgan Richardson, Jonathan Plsek, Kurt D’Amour, Jeff De Boer

The Living Library is a one-of-a-kind experience that blends storytelling, gameplay and learning in a real, interactive and fully immersive, themed environment. Guests interact with animatronic and projected Disney characters in real time through the use of MagicBands. The RFID technology allows guests to experience an ever-changing environment that responds to their actions and influences the progression of their story. Each experience is unique, giving guests the opportunity to embark on entirely new adventures each time they visit.

Ilhavela at Rio De Janeiro, Brasil - University of California Los Angeles
Krysten Burton, Dema Hajmurad, Derek Woods, Jacob Bloom

Ilhavela is a weekly Illumination Extravaganza that leads visitors and locals on a chase through the city, bringing people together from disparate regions. The event inhabits fifteen existing courtyards within the city of Rio that are underutilized. Each courtyard is transformed with a unique intervention that serves a dual purpose - to act as receptacles for interactive projections, as well as enhance the space of the courtyard for daily use. The intent of Ilhavela is to create both permanent and temporary transformations to the city of Rio de Janeiro that are in harmony with the vibrancy of the city’s culture and history, and seek to infuse it with the delight and collective wonder that Disney inspires.

Keşif at Istanbul, Turkey - University of Pennsylvania
John Nappo, Folasade Oba, Emre Tanirgan, Gabrielle Patterson

Keşif explores the city of Istanbul and seeks to transform not only the physical environment, but the experience of everyday life. Keşif exploits the unique layout of the city by centering the experience on the Bosphorus Strait, and particularly around the Bosphorus Bridge, one of the only suspension bridges on the planet uniting two continents: Europe and Asia. To maximize the use of the bridge as a focal point, snapshots magically emerge, seemingly from nothingness, on a dynamic, kinetic sculpture beneath the bridge, conveniently materializing where people can see and appreciate the display from virtually anywhere along the waterfront, including the shore and especially on the ferries.

Walt Disney Imagineering

Walt Disney Imagineering is the unique, innovative organization that creates - from concept through construction – all Disney theme parks, resorts, attractions, cruise ships, real estate developments, and regional entertainment venues worldwide. The name Imagineering combines imagination with engineering.

Contacts:
John Breckow, Frank Reifsnyder - Walt Disney Imagineering, (818) 544-2142 Tim Choy, Peter Goldman - Davidson & Choy Publicity, (323) 954-7510

The projects and concepts presented are not necessarily intended to be built by Disney– they are a way for the entrants to demonstrate their skills and creative abilities. In consideration for the opportunities provided by Imagineering, submissions become the sole property of Walt Disney Imagineering and Imagineering retains all rights to use and/or display the submissions and the materials contained in them.

 

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