POLYCON 2016, the first ever international digital media arts festival by The One Academy, took the local creative education scene by storm in catering to the rising avenues and demands for the fields of digital media, interactive media, maker movement, advertising, design, creative arts and technology.
Organised by the Multimedia and Advertising Schools of The One Academy, the festival, which was more than a week-long, primarily aimed to spread valuable industrial knowledge and insights for The One Academy students, staff and alumni, in order to expand their intelligence, creativity and perspective as part of an endeavor to nurture a generation of polymaths (the word that inspired POLYCON, polymath conference).
The main highlights of the festival encapsulate a 2-day Symposium, 2 special sharing sessions and 14 Masterclasses conducted by a meticulously curated team of local and international industry professionals from the countries France, Japan, United States, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore and Hong Kong.
The 2-day Symposium at TPM, Bukit Jalil, was attended by POLYCON speakers, The One Academians, members of the media and industry delegates. Nine international speakers delivered their talk, namely keynote speakers Kentaro Kimura and Pum Lefebure, and speakers Irwin Quemener, Ricky Ye, Raven Kwok, Nattavut Luenthaisong, Johnason Lo, Takasu Masakazu and Kevin Lee. Topics covered include advertising, marketing, design, multimedia, interactivity, branding and technology.
Unlike the Symposium which caters to a wider range of audience through a general overview of respective fields, the Masterclasses, conducted by 14 international speakers and local industry delegates, concentrated more on POLYCON participants’ practical enhancement. Sessions were conducted intimately in mid-sized rooms with updated facilities for students to practice, for instance, coding, graphic design, programming, brainstorming for ideas, concept building, and Arduino making, among others.
In the bigger picture, the organisation of POLYCON 2016 intends to enhance the quality of The One Academy’s Multimedia Design and Advertising courses, and nurture more Malaysian graduates within these fields as they are currently a rapidly expanding worldwide sector. Thus, potential for growth in the disciplines will be abound, and the younger generation will be bridged to more employment opportunities of the industry.
“We accept the challenge to promote the digital and interactive media, and creative industries, and to put Malaysia on the map, on par with other advanced countries where these sectors thrive,” said Tatsun Hoi, Principal and Founder of The One Academy. “The One Academy is confident that this endeavor will stimulate this new industry.”
In addition to insightful wisdom, technical knowledge, and practical skills imparted to students of The One Academy during the duration of POLYCON, an important aspect of the presence of international speakers was to provide them a highly international outlook in their respective industries, making them more competent not only locally, but also on the global arena. This is part of The One Academy’s ‘Masters Train Masters’ philosophy that instills the practice of procuring the best professionals to nurture young students into becoming future ‘masters’.
Besides Symposium and Masterclass, POLYCON featured a few other attractions such as the International Digital Media, Art & Design Exhibition that shifted focus to the value of creativity in an innovation-driven economy through multi-disciplinary mediums across design creativity, mixed media, technology integration and many more. Contributors of the 11-day exhibition, besides the main speakers of POLYCON, include local and international award-winning creative technologists, crafters, designers, multimedia artists, exhibitors and digital media artists.
A 24-hour ‘Techack’ Hackathon Challenge was organised as a competitive creative exercise exclusively for students who were ready to stretch their minds and put their POLYCON knowledge to good use. The competition emphasised on coming up with great ideas, innovating creative solutions and idea pitching, besides encouraging collaboration among participants who are from various backgrounds, different expertise and skill sets.
“After the project brief has been given, contestants would have to produce their ideas within 24 hours, which are then pitched to the judges consisting of international speakers and our sponsors,” said Cheang Lin Yew, Head of Multimedia Faculty The One Academy. “Contestants can decide to identify problems in entertainment, ecommerce and education, and coming up with a creative solution to improve the quality of living and making life more convenient.”
Lastly, there was Artec, a public maker festival to celebrate the spirit of making by encouraging all local innovative makers, artists and crafters to put their creations out for enthusiasts, besides fostering solidarity within the community. Some of the highlights of Artec were uniquely designed postcards by Postcare, interactive hologram game, wonderful illustrations by artist Kazel Lim, interesting lifestyle products by mu object, and other carefully curated handicrafts
Based on all the activities held in POLYCON 2016, this event will prove to be a great circumstance to stimulate the growth of interest towards the advancement of local technology and creative fields in Malaysia, which are continuing to expand on the global scene. The One Academy also recognises the imminent crossover of different disciplines when it comes to technology, given that we are becoming more and more of a multitasking society. Ultimately, POLYCON is all about uniting different disciplines and providing a global outlook to encourage more young minds to step out of the box and be creatively innovative. For more details about POLYCON, visit www.polycon.com.my.
POLYCON 2016 Symposium Day 1 at Technology Park Malaysia, Bukit Jalil, with international French speaker Irwin Quemener.
POLYCON 2016 Symposium Day 2 at Technology Park Malaysia, Bukit Jalil.
Visitors of an exhibition playing an interactive hologram pyramid game Megan by Pixel Visual which is controlled with a mobile phone using a downloaded application, combining entertainment, art and technology.