Melbourne Design Week 2019 – 6 Must-Sees

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This year’s Melbourne Design Week offers a thought-provoking mix of exhibitions, talks and tours. Take a peek…

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

2019’s Melbourne Design Week features more than 200 exhibitions, talks, tours, films and workshops, with events across town and in neighbouring city Geelong. Running from 14 to 24 March, Melbourne’s largest festival programme to date celebrates both local and international talent, with the core theme of ‘Design Experiments’ – asking how design can shape the future. A mix of ticketed and free activities embrace diverse challenges from the environment to social issues and materials. This year’s festival wraps up on Sunday, but many of the inspiring shows continue beyond the weekend. Here are six of our top FizzPicks…

‘SOMEWHERE OTHER’: JOHN WARDLE ARCHITECTS
Ground Level/Foyer, NGV Australia, Federation Square
Until 28 July (10am-5pm, free)

Visitors are invited to peek through five portals within timber and steel structure ‘Somewhere Other’, a compact, interactive experience by Melbourne practice John Wardle Architects. At NGV Australia until late July, this intriguing installation was first shown as part of 2018’s 16th International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Architecture Biennale (pictured, top and above). Each of the wooden volumes, voids and apertures in its interconnected series frames views of the studio’s projects, the Australian landscape or the craft of collaborators including artist Natasha Johns-Messenger and filmmakers Coco and Maximilian.

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‘NEW VOLUMES BY ARTEDOMUS’: AN INSTALLATION BY FIONA LYNCH AND THOMAS COWARD
TDF Gallery, 14 Little Oxford Street, Collingwood
Until 24 March (11am-5pm, free)

We’re big fans of Artedomus’s ‘New Volumes’ collection, which showcases solid marble homewares by eight Australian designers. This Collingwood exhibition, curated by interior designer Fiona Lynch and designer Thomas Coward, represents the range in an installation that follows the journey of this sculptural material from the ‘ground to the house’, contrasted with a series of chunky marble plinths.

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‘MATERIAL THOUGHT’
Modern Times, 311 Smith Street, Fitzroy
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

Presented by Fitzroy interiors store Modern Times, group exhibition ‘Material Thought’ explores material through the work of innovative Australian designers. On show are furniture, lighting and objects by nine top talents, including Henry Wilson (‘Stone Surface Sconce’, in Calacatta Marble, above), Coco Flip and Christopher Boots, all illuminating themes of design experimentation and sustainability.

’CLEMENT MEADMORE: THE ART OF MID-CENTURY DESIGN’
Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne, Swanston Street
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

Fans of modernism will enjoy exhibition ‘Clement Meadmore: The art of mid-century design’, a homage to the acclaimed Australian talent. The first major survey of Meadmore’s industrial design practice, it explores the inspirations that shaped the renowned sculptor’s early career as a designer. Part of a new wave of Australian design in the Fifties and Sixties, Meadmore championed streamlined forms, fresh materials and new manufacturing processes. His furniture and lighting appeared in the houses of iconic architect Robin Boyd, with well known designs such as his 1951 corded dining chair on view at the Ian Potter Museum of Art.

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‘WELCOME TO WASTELAND’
Compound Interest, 15-25 Keele Street, Collingwood
Until 24 March (11am-5pm, free)

Presented by Friends & Associates, ‘Welcome to Wasteland’ shares the work of cutting-edge local talents involved with sustainable design. Featuring architects, industrial designers, furniture makers and researchers, the show explores the potential of waste materials recycled into fresh, eco-friendly products. Typically innovative is Vert Design’s ‘HuskeeCup’ made from coffee husk waste, their collaboration with Spark & Burnish to craft ‘Marine Debris Bakelite Door Knobs’, and Maddison Ryder’s use of discarded Iceberg lettuce to form ‘Lettuce Eat’ disposable plates. Other materials in the mix include waste glass, ceramic, plastic, oyster shells, rubber bands, paper pulp, denim jeans, pigs’ blood and even golf balls!

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WORK SHOP: FIONA LYNCH
7 Glasshouse Road, Collingwood
Until 24 March (see link for times, free)

A curatorial showcase of experimental design, fine art and objects, interior designer Fiona Lynch’s new permanent gallery Work Shop aims to celebrate work by Australian and international designers and artists, as well as doubling as a testing ground for her own studio’s practice. For Melbourne Design Week, the debut show curates a selection of pieces examining the tension between resolved and incomplete elements, including ceramics by Olivia Walker (black porcelain collapsed vessel, above), burnt wood bowls by Makiko Ryujin, paintings by Jiaxin Nong and lighting design by Mary Wallis.

www.ngv.vic.gov.au/melbourne-design-week
Melbourne Design Week 2019 runs until Sunday 24 March at venues across the city and Geelong

LDF 2015 – Eight Must-sees at Tent and Super Brands

Group shows Tent and Super Brands bring hot design talent to East London. Here are our eight FizzPicks...

BY SOPHIE DAVIES

London Design Festival 2015 is in full swing, but there's still time to cut a slice of the action. Twin shows Tent and Super Brands are at East London's cavernous Truman Brewery until Sunday 27 September, offering a smorgasbord of talent just a skip from Shoreditch Design Triangle.

Featuring more than 440 designers, from crafts names to bold brands from 29 countries, there's a bewildering amount to see. The exhibition is divided into independent, emerging talents at Tent, more established global labels at Super Brands, and national and craft exhibitions at Galleries and Country Showcases, from the Australian International Pavilion to Etsy UK: Four Corners of Craft. There's also a compact tech zone, Techable, and Super Talks 2015, including debates on colour trends and 2016's World Design Capital Taipei.

So, grab your pals, some comfy trainers and our guide to eight must-sees for design hunters... 

&New, Super Brands (S48, Hall SBL)
UK/Finnish contemporary furniture duo &New – aka Jo Wilton and Mirka Grohn – design vibrant, skinny steel furniture that throws great shapes. Think side tables, desks, consoles and clothes rails in pretty pastels and punchy primaries, manufactured in Blighty in small batches.
andnew.co.uk

Glassmania Bohemian Glass Masters, Gallery Events (SC10, Hall T2 2nd Floor)
We're taken with these reinvented tiffin containers in cut crystal with leather straps by Daniela Chodilova for Astera Glass, adding a luxurious touch to an everyday item. Czech glass is rightly famous, so swing by 'Glassmania' for a showcase of true Bohemian talent.
czechtrade.co.uk

Poiat, Super Brands (S16)
When it comes to sleek wooden seating, you've got to hand it to the Finns. Poiat is sharing its award-winning, shapely, moulded plywood 'Lavitta' chair collection, designed to slot into each other for striking storage. Also look out for group show 'Finnish Form', which presents 18 of the country's future-forward designers, brands and manufacturers, including the vibrant modern textiles and tableware of Jonna Saarinen (Hall T1, First Floor, Tent main building).
services.poiat.com 

Constancy and Change in Korean Traditional Craft, Gallery Events (T4, Hall A)
There's something strangely irresistible about these tactile paper vases by Lee Young Soon. Part of the 'Constancy and Change in Korean Traditional Craft' exhibit, presented by KCDF (Korean Craft and Design Foundation), they embody the theme of 'Su-Su, Deom-Deom, Eun-Eun' or 'Simple, Calm, Subtle.' There's 193 pieces of work by 23 artists in six craft categories covering metal, ceramics. lacquer, bamboo, paper and textiles, teaming tradition with modern grace.
kcdf.kr/eng

100% Norway, Gallery Events (Hall G4, Ground Floor)
100% Norway has added a twist to its curation, selecting prototypes and contemporary products from young Norwegian designers set against iconic mid-century and classic designs. We like the graphic 'Fauna' bookends by Hallgeir Homstvedt, formed from Nordic rock in the shape of a native fox, bullfinch, puffin and hedgehog. Slimline 'Duplé' tables and seats from Alexander Åsgård also get our vote, along with Siv Lier's oak-and-brass 'Spring' trays with arty disc-shaped mirrors and Andreas Bergsaker's covetable 'Blossom' accessories trays including two mirrors and a light. From the classics, don't miss the graphic 'Dokka' pendants by Birger Dahl for Northern Lighting and the white and sky-blue 'Hold' pots by Kristine Bjaadal for Magnor Glassverk. Touchy-feely treats.
100percentnorway.com

What Goes Behind... Contemporary Polish Ceramic Design, Gallery Events (C21, Hall T2)
Last year we were impressed by Tent's round-up of Polish graphic and product design, including retro-font-toting 'Mamsam' cups by Full Metal Jacket; this year, Contemporary Polish Ceramic Design is enjoying exposure. There's kooky, graphic work by Magdalena Lapinska, dreamy aqua 'Weeds' plates by Karina Marusinska and striking blue squiggly 'Oko' vases by Malwina Konopacka.
culture.pl

Maoli, Super Brands (S15)
Madagascan brand Maoli is showing off its architectural 'inConcrete' collection, including super-thin tables. Available in white, grey, rust and charcoal, the furniture and accessories can be used inside or out. Legs for the tall 'Jòto Bè' table detach for easier transport.
maoli-inconcrete.com

Sue Pryke, Tent London (F08, Hall T1)
Simple, contemporary and oh-so-shapely, the handcrafted ceramic tableware on Sue Pryke's stall will have you reaching for your chequebook at 'Hello!' Her slipcase terracotta cups and jugs may be familiar, combining white tin glaze over red earth clay, but there are some seductive new colours and forms on offer too, including gorgeous charcoal-grey vases. We love the indigo milk pourer and 'Mr & Mrs' water carafe, both in vitrified earthenware, and the 'Mr & Mrs' teaspoons.
suepryke.com

Lead photo and select others for 100% Norway by Siren Lauvdal.

Tent London and Super Brands London run until Sunday 27 September 2015 at Old Truman Brewery, Hanbury Street, London E1. Open 10am to 8pm; 11am to 6pm Sunday. Last entry 45 minutes before closing. Tickets available online or on the door; tentlondon.co.uk