Isak Akerlund was awarded the top prize for his animated film Art Of Darkness at a ceremony in the Lethaby Gallery in Central St. Martin's new building at Kings Cross. The film was inspired by both Henri Rousseau's 1891 painting, Surprised and Joseph Conrad's novella, Heart Of Darkness.
Two runners-up prices of £2,000 each were also announced by Nova award sponsor Lowe and Partners. The first went to MA Industrial Design graduate, Jan Rose, for her Urban Pouf. The other was awarded to Ryohei Kawanashi for his BA Fashion Knit collection, which comprised oversized garments representing terrorism, international politics, media and the internet.
Commenting on the awards, Lowe and Partners' creative director Zoe Lazarus said:
"It was actually difficult to pick a single winner because the overall standard was so high.
However, Isak's short film showed why a good story, beautifully told is always compelling.
We loved the graphic simplicity and restraint of the animation, as well as the ingenuity of his characterisation and narrative. It made us all smile.
"We were particularly impressed at the way Jan managed to turn the manufacturing process and the end result into a work of art. The process of turning a traditional craft skill into something industrial and contemporary was breathtaking. Even the beautifully constructed machinery he created were made of recycled wood from the colleges old weaving looms.
"Ryohei stood out as an outstanding creative mind who managed to combine multiple layers of meaning with great technical skill and ingenuity. From his ability to make a comment on the state of contemporary society and fashion to his highly original approach to the Fashion knitwear course, we feel he is a unique creative talent."