Jonathan Speirs Scholarship Fund 21/22 winner announced

18th July 2022

(UK) – The Trustees of the Jonathan Speirs Scholarship Fund (JSSF) have announced the winner of the 2021/22 award is Ernest Chin Yang.

Yang is currently studying architecture at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London. He has a long-standing fascination with light, describing it as “a fundamental pillar of human experience” and the thing that “makes (or breaks) a space”. His impressive portfolio of conceptual designs and exploratory pieces include a final year project that centres on ice, investigating the dialectic relationship between light and this unique material. 

His design for a festival of ice set on Lågskär Island seeks to show how it could become a legitimate building material to augment the urban context. In it, he explores how the conditions of transparency, translucency and opaqueness can shift across time, seasons, and frameworks, changing the quality of light and impacting the user experience.

After graduating, Yang plans to work for the Housing Development Board in his home country, Singapore, where he can see an opportunity to make a meaningful difference. By introducing a specific focus on lighting design to the architecture, he hopes to improve the living experience and transform the way everyday Singaporeans interact with their home and city.

The scholarship will be used to support Yang in his final year of architectural studies, helping to pay for more extensive model making and testing of his ideas, as well as setting up a mini production studio including a 3D printer for rapid prototyping.

John Roake, Chairman of the JSSF commented: “We congratulate Ernest Chin Yang on his presentation and portfolio; we were unanimous this year in agreeing he is a worthy and exciting scholar.

“We marked a poignant date in June 2022 with the 10th anniversary of Jonathan’s passing. Our pledge was that we would make a minimum of one award each year until 2023; it is therefore with great satisfaction that we reach this landmark with the next award. As we near the end of the scholarship, we would like to extend our sincere thanks to those companies and individuals who have been so generous with their financial support over the years. It is only thanks to them that we have been able to nurture these talented students in the fields of architecture and lighting.”

More information on past scholars and their progress, as well as news of the final year of the scholarship, can be found on the JSSF website.