Sydney Design Festival 2019 – 5 Must-Sees


Sydney Design Festival 2019 brings inspiring exhibitions, talks and workshops to town. Here are five Fizz faves for getting your design on!


Sydney Design Festival is back for 2019, unpacking new design, sharing emerging and established talents, and tackling design challenges. This year’s theme is ‘Accessing Design’, making design accessible to fresh audiences, with the action spread beyond the obvious inner-city hot spots. Running from 1 to 10 March – but with many shows lasting longer – the festival also shines a light on local design, including indigenous creativity, hosting events from exhibitions to talks, workshops, open studios, screenings and parties. Here are five of our #SDF19 Fizz faves…

Arborescence by Loop.pH.jpg

TOP: Sydney Design Festival keynote speaker Rachel Wingfield of Loop.pH with a range of dynamic past projects. ABOVE: Loop.pH’s ‘Arborescence’ installation for 2014’s Amsterdam Light Festival, proposing a future hybrid of trees and street lighting harnessing the studio’s signature bio-luminescence. Think sustainable ‘living lighting’

Powerhouse Museum, 500 Harris Street, Ultimo
8 March (6pm-8pm)

London designer Rachel Wingfield, co-founder with Mathias Gmachl of Loop.pH, will give the festival keynote speech at Ultimo’s Powerhouse Museum. Launched in 2003, their spatial laboratory is known for cross-disciplinary designs that combine digital, light, art and craft details, often in public spaces. Exploring design, architecture and science, Loop.pH’s intriguing installations and experiences harness diverse materials from LEDs, electro-luminous fibres and NASA’s reflective silver mylar to carbon, bamboo and algae. Buy tickets to the talk online or check out Wingfield’s collaborative workshop ‘Archilace’ on Sunday 10 March (3pm-5pm).


ABOVE: Mungo Scott Flour Mill, historic home to authentic Australian design showcase ‘Home.Grown’ in Summer Hill

Mungo Scott Flour Mill, 2 Smith Street, Summer Hill
8-10 March

A three-day celebration of Australian furniture, lighting and home furnishings, ‘Home.Grown’ is presented by the Authentic Design Alliance and curated by its director Anne-Maree Sargeant. Expect three halls over two levels featuring exhibitions, installations and pop-ups, championing locally designed and made products and homegrown talents. All up you’ll discover around 175 designers and 100 brands. Ground Floor Hall 1 features a combined showcase of designers and smaller independent brands, spanning innovative lighting by Lumil, rugs by Designer Rugs and stylish storage by Sagitine, alongside a pop-up mini mart of Australian homewares available to buy from top3 by design. Installations occupy Ground Floor Hall 2, including ‘Undervalued’ by Nick Rennie, ‘Project Replica’ by Mitch Tobin, ‘Brand a Fake’ by ADA, ‘Used by 3018’ by Will Thompson, a Mercedes-Benz Design Award display and atmospheric photos of the historic venue itself. Upstairs, the First Floor Gallery presents curated zones by 10 established Australian design brands, including Nau, Catapult, Didier, Furnished Forever and Artedomus (‘New Volumes’). Talks, starring talents including Adam Goodrum, Adam Cornish and Christina Bricknell, tackle issues affecting the country’s design scene. The location is a wow too, with the event taking over the 1922 Mungo Scott Flour Mill. A free preview afternoon on Friday 8 March is by RSVP only; for the weekend, buy advance tickets cheaper online or snap them up at the door.

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ABOVE: Trent Jansen’s ‘Tidal Lounger’ chairs and ‘Tidal Coffee Table’, made from premium stainless steel wire for Australian outdoor living brand Tait, feature in ADC’s exhibition ‘Steel’

Australian Design Centre, 101-115 William Street, Darlinghurst
Until 3 April (closed Sundays and Mondays)

Discover the innovative ways artists, designers and architects are using steel in the 21st century at this major touring exhibition from Adelaide’s JamFactory. Free to visit at Darlinghurst’s Australian Design Centre, it showcases the work of 29 Australian creatives, including Korban/Flaubert’s bold steel sculptures, Trent Jansen’s wave-inspired ‘Tidal’ outdoor furniture collection for Tait, and BVN’s graphic Australian PlantBank research building at Mount Annan in New South Wales. A selection of steely works is also displayed across the road at Stylecraft’s showroom (24/100 William Street). Fancy some craft shopping? ADC hosts a Makers Market on Saturday 9 March (10am-4pm), featuring more than 27 local makers.


ABOVE: ‘Purple with Black, White and Blue’ photo (detail) by Jon Setter, part of the artist’s exhibition ‘The Urban Text’ at design store Koskela

Koskela, 1/85 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery
Until 31 March

This series of 12 minimal photographs explores the unnoticed aspects of urban environments and our everyday streetscapes. Detroit-born, Sydney-based Jon Setter’s free exhibition ‘The Urban Text’ is on show at inspiring design store Koskela in Rosebery, so call in for a culture fix, then stick around to shop for Australian-made furniture, homewares and accessories. The artworks are available to buy as unframed prints in three sizes, and their abstract, graphic, simple, colour-block style will look a treat on your wall. Feeling peckish? Three Blue Ducks cafe shares this atmospheric former factory space.


ABOVE: Bernabei Freeman’s contemporary ceramic ‘Hybrid Vessel’ (2018), incorporating 3D-printed ABS and handwoven rattan, is part of digital craft show ‘Femufacture’ at The Japan Foundation

The Japan Foundation Gallery, Level 4, Central Park, 28 Broadway, Chippendale
Until 30 March (closed Sundays)

Lovers of craft and design will enjoy cutting-edge exhibition ‘Femufacture’, which explores the interface of craft traditions and digital fabrication technologies. Hosted by The Japan Foundation Gallery, upstairs in Chippendale’s Central Park mall, it features new works by Japanese and Australian women including 3D-printed ceramic and hand-woven rattan vessels by Melbourne’s Bernabei Freeman (Rina Bernabei and Kelly Freeman). Mediums include weaving, wood turning, indigo-dyeing, paper cut, silversmithing and knitting, combined with 3D printing, CNC machining, coding and robotics. The show also includes wearable technology by light artist Erina Kashihara, who joins the gallery’s free panel discussion to mark International Women’s Day (8 March, 6.30pm-8pm).

Sydney Design Festival 2019 runs until Sunday 10 March at venues across the city, but many events continue beyond this weekend. For more inspiration check out SDF’s suggested itineraries, from free and family-friendly ideas to sustainable thinking and design after dark.

Fenton & Fenton Sydney Pop-up

Melbourne interiors store Fenton & Fenton is popping up in Sydney with a colourful 10-day showcase of furniture and art



Melbourne interiors store Fenton & Fenton has garnered a loyal following for its bold, vibrant mix of contemporary furniture, accessories and art, curated with flair. Now the much-loved Prahran trendsetter is coming to Sydney, with 10-day pop-up 'A Home Away From Home' bringing directional design to The Studio in Rosebery from 20 to 29 October. Championing the brand's love of colour, style and travel, the free showroom/gallery event will help you kit out your home, with cutting-edge ideas and inspiration up for grabs.

Eye-catching art will be a major focus, with more than 70 works by 23 established Australian artists on display in a group show, which you can also shop online. Covetable names in the frame include paintings by Michael Bond, Carly WilliamsEmma Gale and Diana Miller, photography by Kara Rosenlund, ceramics by Louise Kyriakou and Jai Vasicek, handblown glass by Amanda Dziedzic, woven wall hangings by Maryanne Moodie, and metal sculptures by Dion Horstmans

Seeking fresh furniture and accessories for summer? The store's new arrivals will be unveiled too, including 'The Riad Collection' of fabulous Moroccan-influenced outdoor chairs, tables, swings and plant pots, which sports graphic patterns in pretty hues. Six room sets, surrounding a pink Moroccan-inspired courtyard, will showcase Fenton & Fenton's chic edit of designs, from living and dining zones to bedrooms, bathrooms and garden spaces. Cushion, throws, rugs, vintage finds and one-off pieces add more pizzazz.

Although the action kicks off on Friday 20 October, the brand is hosting an afternoon House Warming Party on Saturday 21 October (2pm-5.30pm), where you can meet the artists while enjoying aperitivos by Picco and DJ sets by Alice Q. Everyone's welcome, with free entry to both the 10-day event and party – just RSVP first online. Fenton & Fenton's consultants will be on hand to share advice on the collection, colour, styling and trends.

You can also discover Insider Secrets at three ticketed panel talks with creative talents, with themes ranging from sensual homes (6.30pm-8pm, Thursday 26) to entertaining (11am-12.30pm, Friday 27) and displaying art, collections and curios (10am-11.30am, Saturday 28 October). Brand founder Lucy Fenton will take part, alongside stylists, artists, florists, mixologists and chefs, including experts from home sound system Sonos and Australian modern lime paint company Bauwerk, which will launch a bespoke range of six new natural, eco-friendly paint colours at the show. Home sweet home...

Fenton & Fenton 'A Home Away From Home – Sydney' is at The Studio, 2/85 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery, Sydney from 20 to 29 October 2017, 10am to 5pm daily. RSVP for the free pop-up event or party, or buy limited tickets in advance for the three talks ($35.57 each)

Art Month Sydney

Sydney is crackling with contemporary art this March, with craft, style and photography events in the mix. Don't miss these six Fizz faves…


Sydneysiders are in luck; from 6 to 29 March 2015 the city is getting its art on. Whether you’re an artist, a collector, a craft fan or an installation buff you'll find something to intrigue you at not-for-profit festival Art Month Sydney, with late-night gallery openings, dinners, debates and drinks. Explore artists’ studios, take an artist-led walk or join a Buy Art tour to snap up something special to display at home. For investment inspiration, check out the Collectors’ Space (Ray Hughes Gallery, 270 Devonshire Street, Surry Hills), where you can ogle the personal collections of art-savvy types, including chef Kylie Kwong. You can even get your culture hit by artcycle if you’d rather explore on two wheels…

Art at Night: East Sydney
When: 12 March, 6pm-10pm
Where: Firstdraft Gallery, 13-17 Riley Street, Woolloomooloo

Three of the city’s buzziest art precincts will open after dark on Thursdays during March, including this debut culturefest in East Sydney, taking in Darlinghurst and Woolloomooloo. Cruise 20 of the area’s local galleries and project spaces from 6pm-8pm, then hit the official Art Bar at Firstdraft Gallery for drinks, tunes and performances from 8pm until late. Firstdraft will be showing ‘Chromatic Syncopation’, featuring three artists including Rebecca Baumann, Ross Manning and indigenous street art talent Reko Rennie.

Follow-up Art at Nights take place in the same time slot at Chippendale/Redfern on 19 March and Paddington/Woollahra on 26 March, with Art Bars at Wellington St Projects (19-25 Wellington Street) and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery (8 Soudan Lane) respectively. Don’t miss Redfern hot spot The Bearded Tit (183 Regent Street), with its kooky 'Grot(to)' show, or Chippendale’s White Rabbit Gallery (30 Balfour Street) for contemporary Chinese art, with new exhibition ‘State of Play’ running until August. Download zone maps on the festival website, and follow the hashtag #artmonth. Artcycle tours (5.30pm-8pm) are available for East Sydney and Chippendale/Redfern.

The Art of Eating: Ceramics, Food & Conversation
When: 14 March, 6pm-10pm
Where: Utopia Art Sydney, 2 Danks Street, Waterloo
$190pp, book online

Exploring tactile contemporary ceramics in a hands-on way, this convivial event brings together four Australian ceramicists, a delicious Thai banquet from Longrain and Lisa McGuigan Wines. Art Month’s artistic director Glenn Barkley will host the conversation with craft talents Brett Stone, Merran Esson, Liane Rossler and Kati Watson. Tickets include dinner, wine and a ceramic artwork by Stone for each guest.

The festival also offers a self-guided ceramics tour, a debate on collecting ceramics (25 March, National Art School), plus exhibition 'Shelfie', showcasing former Dinosaur Designs' director Liane Rossler's sensual, still, monochrome pieces at Annette Larkin Fine Art.

I can do that! The Rise of the Makers
When: 17 March, 6.30pm-8.30pm
Where: Koskela, 1/85 Dunning Avenue, Rosebery

Free, register online

A celebration of craft, from the handmade to the art-led, brings together a group of makers at Rosebery gallery/boutique Koskela. The conversation will explore new tech platforms for promoting art, building new online and local markets. Speakers include Luke Temby of CUPCO, Fictional Objects' Emma Rutherford and Rebecca Chua of Chuchu, with design writer Gillian Serisier as MC.

You Can’t Put That There! Public Art in Sydney
When: 18 March, 6.30pm-8.30pm
Where: State Library of New South Wales, Macquarie Street, Sydney
Free, book online

With public art a hot topic in Sydney after a spate of controversial commissions, this debate at the State Library tackles the thorny question of best practice for urban installations. Sure to get airtime will be Hany Armanious's cheeky conceptual 'Pavilion' for Belmore Park, riffing on generic plastic milk crates, and sinuous sculpture the 'Cloud Arch' by Junya Ishigami, intended for the CBD's George Street, both due to be installed in 2017.

Artist Tour: Garry Trinh
When: 28 March, 10am-12.30pm
Where: Chrissie Cotter Gallery, Pidcock Street, Camperdown

Free, book online

Sydney-based photography Garry Trinh hosts a one-off stroll – also available as a self-guided online tour – focusing on snapping the unexpected, spontaneous moments of everyday life, from the mundane to the magical.

Gotta Have It: Art in the Home
When: 29 March, 2pm-4pm
Where: Collectors’ Space, 270 Devonshire Street, Surry Hills
Free, book online

As viewers of Oz reality TV show ‘The Block’ will know, art in the home is fraught with issues of subjective taste. Should you match your couch to the artwork, or style your room, then find art you love afterwards? Speakers discussing how to live with art include author/stylist Amanda Talbot, Belle magazine's Richard Waller, Liane Rossler and Gillian Serisier.