Lee Broom – Park Life

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British designer Lee Broom reveals ‘Park Life’, a dazzling pop-up exhibition in a car park in Sydney

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

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UK design talent Lee Broom is known for glamorous lighting, furniture and accessories. His shows are just as cutting-edge, with the rising star previously exhibiting his work in a mock department store, a mobile van (albeit one tricked out with an elegant room interior) and on a fairground carousel. Now Broom is taking over an underground car park below Space’s Sydney furniture showroom for ambitious pop-up ‘Park Life’, sharing his new lights with the public in a modernist maze. The Alexandria installation will be his largest to date, covering 4,000 square feet, with the free exhibition running from 14 to 20 March.

‘I am delighted to return to Australia to present this exciting exhibition with Space Furniture,’ says Broom. ‘Australia has been a big supporter of my work for many years and it is an honour to create such a significant installation to showcase my collection in Sydney.’

TOP: The entrance to Sydney’s subterranean ‘Park Life’ maze pavilion, with Lee Broom flanked by his ‘Orion Globe’ and ‘Orion Tube’ lights. ABOVE RIGHT: Fix up, look sharp… London lighting designer Lee Broom before he turned blonde for his Australian tour

A former actor and fashion designer, Broom is known for his trademark sharp look, teaming simple classic and street-savvy details. His designs also reinterpret classical styles in contemporary ways, giving them an unexpected edge. Expect more striking fusions at immersive experience ‘Park Life’, where he’ll be transforming the raw, concrete, industrial car park into his take on a trad English garden.

ABOVE: Lee Broom’s surreal modernist garden maze ‘Park Life’ in Sydney, a beautifully resolved installation featuring his lighting, accessories and furniture in a series of 16 illuminated room sets. Enchanting vignettes play with ideas from chess boards and Newton’s Cradles to cascading waterfalls and trompe l’oeil reflections

Channelling a meandering maze, the pop-up will take guests on ‘a poetic journey of discovery through hidden passageways, with tableaus and vignettes,’ says Broom, showcasing his lighting, furniture and accessories. Inspiration hails from 18th-century pleasure gardens, with their mazes and miniature waterways, amusing visitors with the latest art, architecture, music and illuminations. However, Broom gives the concept a modernist spin, aiming to create a sense of escapism, entertainment and drama.

ABOVE: More mesmerising moments from the ‘Park Life’ pavilion. A white polycarbonate box within the concrete car park, its interconnecting spaces are lined with pale gravel, with designs displayed beside classical statues on boxy, layered plinths. Black acrylic, cut-outs and mirror add surprise to surfaces

If Broom’s mind-bending 2017 trompe l’oeil installation ‘On Reflection’ at his London showroom is anything to go by, design hunters should be in for a treat. Broom chose to show in Sydney, not Milan this year, reaching out to his Australian and Asia-Pacific fanbase, and has put all his creative energy into crafting a surreally beautiful space, guaranteed to whisk visitors into wonderland.

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ABOVE: Lee Broom’s new ‘Eclipse’ pendant lights, updated in polished gold, will be showcased at the pop-up

Debuting at the ‘Park Life’ installation is a new version of Broom’s award-winning ‘Eclipse’ light in a polished gold finish, a warmer, softer interpretation of the original chrome. Like an elegant mobile, these sculptural pendants look different from every angle, with mirror-polished gold and acrylic discs interacting, simultaneously eclipsing and revealing their charms.

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ABOVE FROM LEFT: ‘Eclipse’ chandelier three piece in sheeny gold. The design also comes as a table lamp, with all three variations available to order from April. Broom’s ‘Orion Tube’ and ‘Orion Globe’ pendant lights in polished gold

‘Park Life’ is part of Broom’s wider #LBTour of Asia and Australia, which has seen him give design talks at Space’s showrooms in Singapore for Singapore Design Week (4-17 March), and Brisbane, with another to come at Space Melbourne on 14 March (6pm-9pm) for Melbourne Design Week (14-24 March). Design fans can buy tickets to the Melbourne event, in which Broom will chat about his career, global brand and the experimental nature of design. Plans are also afoot for him to talk at ECC’s Auckland showroom in New Zealand. Don’t miss this illuminating talent…
leebroom.com spacefurniture.com.au

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ABOVE: Broom’s circular ‘Carousel XL’ pendant light in matte black at the installation, inspired by British fairground merry-go-rounds

Free exhibition ‘Park Life’ is at Space, 84 O’Riordan Street, Alexandria, Sydney, from 14 to 20 March 2019 (open daily 10am to 5pm); a launch evening on 13 March is by invite only. Lee Broom’s products are available exclusively in Australia, Singapore and Malaysia from Space Furniture. His ticketed Melbourne talk is at Space, 629 Church Street, Richmond, on 14 March (6pm-9pm)

Pictures: Craig Wall (Sydney installation)

Melbourne Indesign 2016

Two-day festival Melbourne Indesign is bringing new exhibitors, product launches and parties to town...

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Melbourne Indesign kicks off today, enticing the design community out to play with sociable events from Friday 12 to Saturday 13 August. Based mainly in Melbourne's design showrooms, it focuses on the CBD and hot design districts Collingwood and Richmond, with product launches, talks, tours and parties that will be catnip to design hunters. Here are the Fizz highlights…

ABOVE: Interiors store Zenith's pretty 'All Sorts' lounger and ottoman range
BELOW: Design hunters will be out in force for Melbourne Indesign

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FRIDAY 12 AUGUST
Timed events (10am-6pm)

MID16 kicks off on Friday with a day of industry talks, design workshops, ticketed events,  architecture tours, and invitation-only launches from 10am to 6pm. Venues range from the city centre to Richmond and Collingwood, with showrooms hosting much of the action.

Up Late (5pm-10pm)
Why drag yourself around a trade fair when you can sashay around Melbourne's vibrant city centre instead? On Friday evening, from 5pm to 10pm, join the inaugural Up Late in the CBD session, a trail linking five top style and cultural spaces offering intriguing design experiences after dark. Business hours will be extended and corks popped...

Start your night at Swedish fashion label COS (The Strand, 240 Elizabeth St) where Fizz fave Adelaide design duo Daniel Emma will create three installations inspired by the classic white shirt across the brand’s Melbourne and Sydney stores.

High-end furniture showroom Hub (63 Exhibition St) launches new designs by Italian brand Moroso, plus an exhibition by Spanish glass artist Luis Parades. Hub will also be drumming up applicants for their amazing Design Speed Date later in October, a rare chance for Melbourne and Sydney talents to pitch their design ideas to Moroso's influential art director Patrizia Moroso.

Swing by District (20 Russell St) to check out their smartly curated products, including furniture by Simon James Design, David Moreland Design and Mattiazzi, plus lighting by Resident and Hem, then kick back at Zenith (179 Flinders Lane) for Winter Drinks while lounging on The SD Element's appealing 'All Sorts' chaise longue and ottomans.

Finally, head to major gallery NGV Australia (Ground Level, NGV Design Studio, corner of Flinders St and Russell St) at 6pm for an exclusive ticketed curators' preview of exhibition 'Glenn Murcutt – Architecture of Faith', focussed on the seminal Australian architect's new Australian Islamic Centre at Hobsons Bay, on the fringes of Melbourne. Just launched on 9 August, the exhibition is open to the public until 19 February 2017.

ABOVE: Detail of a roof lantern at Glenn Murcutt's Australian Islamic Centre; and elevated roof showing lantern lay-out, designed in collaboration with Elevli Plus


SATURDAY 13 AUGUST
Design Districts (
10am-6pm)
Established design district Richmond and edgy up-and-comer Collingwood are the hot spots for design stores in Melbourne, with more than 40 exhibitors coming out to play on Saturday from 10am to 6pm. Permanent showrooms and pop-up spaces will showcase furniture, lighting, accessories, flooring, fixtures and fittings. Expect intimate events, installations with tempting catering, and sensory delights. A Saturday-only shuttle bus service will ferry visitors around both districts, stopping off at key sites.

Richmond
Just east of the CBD, Richmond is home to many of Melbourne's major furniture and interiors showrooms, based on and around Church and Swan streets, and adjacent quarter Cremorne. Fizz tips include respected store Cult (44 Cremorne St, 9am-5.30pm), teaming up with exciting Danish design label Hay to present the Australian launch of the striking new ‘Palissade’ outdoor furniture range by French duo the Bouroullec brothers (see our post on the UK launch here). The leafy installation will be shown at nursery Glasshaus's Inside events space. Also drop by the Dutch Design Collective (33 Cremorne St, 10am-5pm) celebrating 12 of the best Dutch design brands at the House of Orange warehouse, including powerhouse Moooi, stylish HK Living Australia and iconic Artifort.

Shared space Gentfactory (141 Dover St, Cremorne) features flooring, surface materials and commercial design, plus the Corian Recharge Bar for refreshments. Also on the Richmond circuit are Artedomus, Arthur G, Atlas Concorde Ceramiche, CDK Stone, Cerdomus Tile Studio, PAD Furniture, Products for People, Shaw Contract, Sketch Tile Concepts, Tongue n Groove, and Urban Edge Ceramics. Luckily, there are plenty of cafes, restaurants and bars for refuelling en route.

ABOVE: Ross Didier unveils his new 'Gelava' chairs and 'Brulaire' tables, inspired by sweet treats, sorbet colours and desserts, as part of the 'First Bite' collection on show at Pioneer in Collingwood

Collingwood
Industrial-chic, inner-north Collingwood is fast becoming the go-to spot for design, galleries, cafes, bars and restaurants, almost stealing the limelight from more gentrified neighbour Fitzroy. It's a smaller trail, with top Fizz tip Cafe Culture + Insitu (77 Cromwell St), where you'll catch six hot local names. Talents on display include Anaesthetic, Anchor Ceramics, ChristelHDidier, LifeSpaceJourney, and Savage Design. The six will also create an installation for Indesign's conceptual series The Project, under the theme Evolution. Don't miss the gourmet hot dog cart from noon to 3pm! Hub at James Makin Gallery (67 Cambridge St) will present a landscape of pendant lights using Paris Au Mois d'Août's delicate hand-made fabrics, alongside curated art and objects.

Shared spaces are another tip here, with Pioneer (5 Easey St) supporting new and local independent design, including Didier (Ross Didier's label debuting gelato-hued furniture, lighting and rugs with the First Bite Collection), Franco Crea, ThinkLab by Luxxbox, Arko Furniture, Apparentt, indigenous upholstery fabrics at Winya, and lighting by Oxley/Butterworth.

You'll find 13 brands under one roof at Rokeby Studios (1/90-94 Rokeby St), including furniture, flooring, finishes and fixtures, with Scandinavian Business Seating and smart Japanese toilet brand TOTO in the mix. Melbourne roaster Padre Coffee will keep you buzzing. Collingwood's design trail also features pit stops at AJAR furniture and design, Darkon Lighting, Interface and Winspear.
 

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ABOVE: Cerdomus Tile Studio's elemental space is part of the Richmond design precinct, showcasing porcelain slabs and pavers

Timed Events and After Party
Saturday also sees a series of timed events take place across both precincts, including talk '(The Internet Stole) My Design' at 11am (5 Easey St; free but rsvp), with Australian designers Kate StokesRoss Gardam, Nick Rennie, Tomek Archer and Tom Skeehan discussing the country's copyright rip-offs with moderator Anne-Maree Sargeant of The Snap Assembly, hosted by the Authentic Design Alliance. Coffee, canapés, croissants, chocolate and cocktails add to the day's fun, culminating in the ticketed Wrap Party, from 7pm, at Harry the Hirer's recently unveiled showroom (81-95 Burnley St, Richmond).

ABOVE: One of 2015's collaborations for The Project at Sydney Indesign; expect more installations across town in Melbourne

The Project
Finally, look out for The Project, Indesign's regular series of collaborations between design brands, material suppliers and architects, including Cafe Culture + Insitu x Local Designers, and Karndean Designflooring x Daniel Dalla Riva.

Registration
Online registration for Indesign is now closed, but you can register for free at participating showrooms on the day. You'll then receive a registration pass, a lanyard and a MID tote bag to stash details of brands you love. View the handbook online, including district maps, or download the interactive app. Then hashtag away, using #MID16, #melbourneindesign and #indesigntheevent. You can also win design goodies along the way.

Future fairs
Can't make Melbourne Indesign? Next up is Singapore Indesign on 8 October 2016 and Wine In Design in Perth also launching in October, with the fair returning to Sydney in 2017. Enjoy!
indesigntheevent.com/melbourne

Melbourne Indesign runs from Friday 12 to Saturday 13 August 2016

Open House Melbourne

Open House Melbourne kicks off this weekend, offering you the keys to the city’s most intriguing places and spaces

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

Annual architecture weekender Open House Melbourne is on this Saturday 30 to Sunday 31 July, unlocking the doors of more than 140 unusual historic and contemporary buildings to the public. Many of these iconic Melbourne spots are normally off limits, so grab your chance to take a sneak peek inside.

The roll call of 2016 buildings open for inspection includes covetable private houses, creative studios and offices, sports facilities and synagogues, upscale shopping malls and electricity sub stations. State buildings, banks and court houses make the cut, and you can even check out a circus, a seafarers' mission and a meat market. A tram depot and Port of Melbourne boat tours will appeal to transport fiends.

Founded in 2008, this popular free festival attracts queues around town to check out the city’s best design and architecture, but you can track the least crowded times to swing by busy sites on Open House's FacebookInstagram and Twitter feeds. On average visitors take in four to five buildings a day, but plan your route first as not all spaces are open both days or for the same hours, and some require advance registration or even a $5 booking fee so may fill out fast. Most visits are self-guided, but there are some pre-reserved tours due to space limitations. If you're too late to book, you may be able to leave your name on select building door lists.

TOP: It looks like a monster took a bite out of the radical 41X high-rise. Picture: John Gollings
ABOVE: Eco features rule on the verdant roof of Council House 2 – CH2; Signal hosts a youth arts initiative in an old signal switching building; train carriages atop Easey Street's End to End Building in Collingwood

Our wish list this year includes Lyons' eco-conscious high-rise hub 41X at 41 Exhibition Street, developed by the Australian Institute of Architects and boasting a radical, colourful facade. Also on a green tip, we recommend Council House 2 – CH2's verdant rooftop, an office building for council staff packed with eco goodness. For edgier urban sites, head to youth arts centre Signal, which occupies Flinders Street Station's last surviving signal switching box, and ITN ArchitectsEnd to End Building in Collingwood, which houses old train carriages on the roof (one now home to Easey's lofty burger joint).

We also fancy checking out Bates, Smart & McCutcheon’s sleek Orica House, one of the country’s first fully glazed skyscrapers and once its highest; COX Architecture’s futuristic 2010 stadium AAMI Park; and Croxen Ramsay’s new event space Glasshouse in Olympic Park, with interiors by Hecker Guthrie.

ABOVE: The Mad Men guys would feel at home in 1958's modernist 20-storey Orica House (ex ICI House) in East Melbourne; AAMI Park stadium sports a geodesic dome and hosts sports and music events. Its roof design uses 50% less steel than a typical stadium of the same size

We’d also like to take a twirl through the studios of influential local architecture practices Woods Bagot, Six Degrees and John Wardle Architects (which shares its building with printed design and art studio Spacecraft).

On the residential front, there's a choice selection of cutting-edge contemporary homes, including the super-skinny Acute House by OOF! Architecture, although almost all are by pre-booked tour only, so get in quick sticks. For something more unusual, fitness fans should take a gander at the two-level Cycle Collective in Richmond, which sports a coffee cart and Pilates studio downstairs and inspiring spin cycle set-up above.

ABOVE: Events space Glasshouse occupies the 1956 Olympic swimming stadium site; Bates Smart's industrial-chic CBD studio; Six Degrees' Fitzroy studio features cliche-busting colour and stained-glass; Bricktastic Cycle Collective is a sociable retreat for spin classes, Pilates or coffee

Also on offer are events, exhibitions, workshops, screenings, talks and tours, with many extending throughout the year. This weekend you can 'Meet the Young Guns of Melbourne' to refuel over coffee, breakfast or a drink at cafes and bars designed by emerging talent, or join a quirky Rooftop and Landscape Tour. Don't miss new exhibition 'Occupied' at RMIT Design Hub (until 24 September 2016), which looks at housing pressures in our mushrooming metropolises. Access all areas!
openhousemelbourne.org

Open House Melbourne runs from 10am to 4pm Saturday 30 to Sunday 31 July 2016

Aesop – London and Melbourne

With a new beauty parlour at each end of the London to Melbourne route, Aesop has just ticked all our boxes...

BY AMY BRADFORD AND SOPHIE DAVIES

Bloomsbury is the setting for another London outpost of Australian skin care brand Aesop, in an elegant store by local design studio JamesPlumb. The duo took inspiration from the location on Lamb’s Conduit Street – the site of a 16th-century conduit to convey water to city dwellers from nearby springs – when creating the interior, which includes two water features. The first is a stream running through a wall of copper shelving; the second a sculptural installation in which water drops from a copper ‘quill’ pipe into a vessel below. The space also features a garden room and outdoor area, reclaimed Staffordshire quarry tiles on the floor and a moody colour scheme influenced by the paintings of Bloomsbury Group heroine Dora Carrington.

ABOVE: Thin pipes convey water between oxidised copper shelves at Aesop Lamb's Conduit Street
ABOVE RIGHT: Reclaimed tiles and plants create a garden feel
RIGHT: Bespoke copper taps and sinks contrast with a dark palette; water drips from a sculptural pipe 'quill' into a shiny reservoir below

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ABOVE FROM TOP: A bold feature wall of 1,550 cardboard sheets creates a curvy cocoon at Melbourne's Aesop Flinders Lane

Meanwhile in Melbourne, Aesop's in-house Design Department has reintroduced its iconic Flinders Lane store on one of the city's hippest strips. Designed in 2007 by Rodney Eggleston and Anne-Laure Cavigneaux of Melbourne's March Studio, the cardboard-clad space was originally created in just five days as a temporary installation. Rebooted after inevitable wear and tear, it now features a tactile, sinuous wall of reclaimed industrial cardboard on one side, reminiscent of a cave or Uluru's rocky outcrop. Intended to evolve with age, it's contrasted with a darker palette in the rest of the shop, with a restrained balance of concrete, lacquered oak and blackened steel. Continuing its habit of collaborating with local design studios, Aesop recently opened boutiques in Berlin, TorontoFrankfurtParisNottingham, Fukuoka, Hamburg and Los Angeles, as well as a new store on East London's Broadway Market. Inspired? Check out our earlier stories on Aesop's Richmond and Berlin Mitte branches.
aesop.com

Aesop Lamb's Conduit Street, 50 Lamb’s Conduit Street, London WC1, UK
Aesop Flinders Lane, Shop 1C, 268 Flinders Lane, Melbourne 3000, Australia

Aesop Richmond

Georgian grandeur gets a 21st-century update at Aesop's new Richmond store, all in the pursuit of beauty

BY AMY BRADFORD

They’re all completely different, but Aussie beauty brand Aesop’s stores are always modern and inspiring. The latest, Aesop Richmond, is located in a sensitively restored Georgian townhouse in south-west London, which was stripped back to its original features by the in-house design team before being embellished with Turkish rugs and blue paints by heritage Brit brand Sanderson.

Taking pride of place in the shop's centre is a huge antique fish-scaling sink, which now serves as a basin for cleansing hands after you’ve tried out a product or three. Raw floorboards, a vintage fireplace and ample windows are testaments to the building's great bones; a sleek circular mirror adds contemporary style. Plans are afoot for a café/event space and treatment rooms upstairs, too. See you in the queue!
aesop.com

ABOVE AND BELOW: Soothing aquatic blues create a sense of calm in the light-filled showroom. The minimal seating and neatly arranged product displays almost become a backdrop to the space itself, which is relaxed and welcoming

Aesop, 19 King Street, Richmond, London TW9