Soon to graduate with a B.F.A. in Interior Design, Kyle Vice has already built an impressive resume of accolades and recognition. It’s difficult to decide which is the more impressive, between his role as this year’s Class President for the Interior Design Organization or being named to Metropolis Magazine’s 2022 Class of the Metropolis Future 100, a cohort of the top 100 graduating students from architecture and interior design programs in the United States and Canada. Metropolis Future 100 is sponsored by architecture and design firms interested in recruiting a talented, diverse pool of candidates, and the design awards will be featured in the magazine’s March/April issue and online.
Unsurprisingly, his vision and achievement haven’t escaped the notice of Dr. Hoa Vo, Assistant Professor of Interior Design in the Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design, who nominated Vice for the award. “Kyle’s ability to think ‘outside-the-box’ in interior design amazes me,” said Dr. Vo. We caught up with Kyle to learn more about his inspiration, aesthetic and plans for the future.
College of the Arts: What propelled you to pursue a degree in interior design and was there an eye-opening design or moment that solidified this decision?
Kyle Vice: When I was 12, I had a unique opportunity to shadow an architect who was building a space for our family. At the time, I was just excited to watch him draft plans, manage the team and make drawings of what he envisioned. It wasn’t until the first day of groundbreaking that it hit me – seeing the space come to life in real time was exhilarating! From that point, I knew I wanted to work in the architectural field and pursue a career in design.
COTA: In your portfolio, you mentioned that this year had you thinking about the importance of community. Can you tell us more about that?
KV: Yes, the pandemic has had different impacts on everyone from loss, seclusion and even mental health. If there is a key takeaway from trying times, it’s the value of family, friends and community. I try to incorporate this idea in my designs by allowing the space to be customized for the end user, enriching their livelihoods and enlivening their own communities.
COTA: How would you describe your design approach and aesthetic?
KV: My design approach is simple: People. Design has the power to shape physical, political, economic and even cultural structures. It is our job, as designers, to make all feel welcome. This includes Universal Design and making sure that each space is inclusive of those with both visible and invisible disabilities. It is also important to design in a way that promotes equality between genders, race, and sexualities, while empowering users as they enter the spaces that we have created. Inclusivity is the future of the design world, and we must come together to provide beautiful, safe environments for all to enjoy and thrive. Also, I’ve always been fascinated with minimalist designs, both graphically and architecturally, and trust in the idea that less is more.
COTA: Outside of the classroom, are you involved with ID/Design activities or internships? What is one key takeaway from those experiences that you might apply moving into your career?
KV: Absolutely! All the professional connections and relationships I’ve developed over my college years have informed my career goals and portfolio decisions and have created mentors in the industry. One of the key pieces of advice that I’ve been given has been to have an open mind, innovate and approach each new project through a fresh lens.
COTA: How does it feel to be named among the top 100 graduates…I’m sure a confidence booster?
KV: I am elated and thrilled to be named one of the top 100 designers in the U.S. and Canada! It’s very surreal and I have to thank all my professors and peers for their guidance on this journey. When I was a kid, my mom always told me “What you put into it, you get out of it.” Through any doubt in my life, those words have been in the back of my head. I’m a firm believer that good design comes from hard work and commitment, and I’m both humbled and excited for this recognition.
COTA: What’s next after graduation…do you plan to further your studies, explore other cities, or stay in ATL?
KV: After graduation, I plan to stay in Atlanta for a few years to explore and connect with our local community, while continuing to build my talents as a team member and leader. Ultimately, I would love to explore new cities and expand my network and collaboration to focus on sustainability, universal design and overall enhancement of spaces around the world.