Zachary Felder ’18, Morgan Gaudet ’18 and Micah Lynch ’18 have been chosen for this year’s Eric Cohler Internship and Travel Awards, which provide funding for study abroad coupled with an internship at Eric Cohler Design, Inc. in New York City. The annual award is made possible by gifts from acclaimed interior designer Eric Cohler ’81, and support students interested in art and/or design.
Felder and Lynch, who entered as a team, stressed the importance of collaboration in their application. “Here at HWS,” they wrote, “we have experienced the benefits of an atmosphere that promotes collaboration over competition, especially in the architecture studios, where instead of trying to outdo each other, students regularly share ideas gleaned from diverse backgrounds and study abroad experiences.”
Felder and Lynch will travel to New York City in August to work for Eric Cohler at his Fifth Avenue studio. They will also travel to Japan for 10 days to study Japanese architectural design, with an emphasis on wood joinery and the dynamism of Japanese interior design.
The architectural studies majors hope to use the collective experience gained through the Cohler Award to rehabilitate a bus into a traveling studio, something, they say ‘that would be markedly more difficult to accomplish without a shared immersion in interior design and Japanese woodworking.”
In addition to interning at Eric Cohler Design, Gaudet will travel to Denmark, a country with a strong legacy of interior design. She is particularly interested in lighting design. “I am enthralled by light: how it changes space, mood and aesthetics,” she says. “I believe that light is one of the most important aspects of design not only because it allows us to see a space, but also because light controls so much of the mood that we feel when entering an space.”
Gaudet is an architectural studies major with minors in studio art and environmental studies, and studied architecture abroad in Rome, Italy, in 2016. She received first place in the HWS Design Competition in the same year. While in Denmark, she will meet with designers such as Oivind Slaatto, a contemporary lighting designer, and tour museums and institutions including Lightyears, a Danish lighting company.
Eric Cohler earned his B.A. in English and art history from Hobart in 1981. He holds a master’s degree in historic preservation from the Columbia University School of Architecture and Urban Design, and a certificate from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He is an adjunct professor of art and architecture at HWS, and was given the Hobart Medal of Excellence, the Alumni Association’s highest honor, in 2016.
Established in 1991, Eric Cohler Design, Inc., specializes in interior design and restoration. Cohler has been dubbed the “Mixmaster” by magazine editors for using classical elements juxtaposed with contemporary materials for a jolt of unusual color or texture. His projects have included houses, apartments and commercial spaces across the United States, Europe and the Caribbean, including the dining room in the Obama White House.