Interior Design Exchange Student Places in Design Competition

The Retail Design Institute’s 2014 Student Design Competition winners were announced on July 14, and Yangan Huang, a second-year graduate exchange student from Hunan University studying interior design at LSU, received honorable mention for his entry, “Sea Queen.” Huang’s faculty advisors on this project were Associate Professor Jun Zou and Instructor John Campbell.

Huang is working on his thesis under Associate Professor Zou’s supervision and is serving as a research assistant in the LSU School of Interior Design. He received his bachelor’s degree in furniture design in 2012 from Central South University of Forestry & Technology in Changsha, China, and is currently working toward his master’s degree in environmental design. His thesis topic, daylighting analysis of vernacular houses toward sustainability, energy, and efficiency, has been partially supported by Zou’s receipt of an LSU Faculty Research Grant.

On top of his research efforts, Huang has helped lead workshops on freehand sketching, watercolor, and the use of Ecotect (sustainable building design software) in a lighting studio course. Huang’s productive eight-month visit is an outcome of a formal research and educational exchange program between LSU and Hunan University.

The Retail Design Institute received more than 200 submissions for the 33rd annual design competition, representing dozens of design schools and programs across the country. This year the institute awarded $10,000 in prize money thanks to their sponsors Stylmark and Toshiba.

The request for proposal for this year’s competition outlined deliverables toward a new concept for a large specialty beauty retailer. Huang’s proposal outlined plans for Sea Queen, a new brand located in London established by Beauty Company, Inc. Sea Queen designs, researches, and sells marine-sourced cosmetics. His master plan was inspired by the undersea cave.

Yangan Huang’s Proposal, “Sea Queen”


The Retail Design Institute promotes the advancement and collaborative practice of creating selling environments, working with colleges and universities to develop retail design programs. Visit for more information.