Melbourne Design Week 2019 – 6 Must-Sees


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


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…

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.


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.


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.

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.


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!


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.
Melbourne Design Week 2019 runs until Sunday 24 March at venues across the city and Geelong

Sydney Open 2016

Access all areas at Sydney Open this weekend, when the city's best buildings are thrown open to the public


Architecture and design lovers can explore some of Sydney's most exciting modern and heritage spaces this weekend, as popular annual event Sydney Open unlocks doors around town. The festival offers access to more than 50 inspiring buildings, usually off limits to the public, from award-winning contemporary offices, studios and galleries to historic government, state and religious edifices, ranging from the CBD to The Rocks and Barangaroo.

TOP: The rooftop view from Tower Two, Barangaroo, aiming to be the first climate-positive precinct of its scale in the world
ABOVE: In new commercial district Barangaroo, Two International Towers, at 200 Barangaroo Avenue, by Rogers, Stirk Harbour + Partners, features high-performance solar-shading facades; Hassell architects' studio, at Pier 8/9, 23 Hickson Road, occupies three levels of a historic Walsh Bay wharf; Grosvenor Place, 225 George Street, by acclaimed Australian architect Harry Seidler, includes back-lit golden onyx walls in the lobby

Snap up a Sydney Open Ticket to join in the fun on main day Sunday 6 November, with a programme of drop-in talks and tours hosted by architects and experts at select buildings ($49 for general admission). You can also book more in-depth, small-group guided Focus Tours on Saturday 5 November, or upgrade to VIP status for priority access on Sunday ($220; includes a preview evening briefing at Level 41 of Two International Towers, Barangaroo, on Friday 4 November). For updates on the day follow host Sydney Living Museums' social media @sydlivmus and hashtag your snaps #sydneyisopen. Our top FizzPicks include the innovative buildings pictured, most of them new on the list this year. Up, up and away!

ABOVE: Macquarie Group at No. 1 Martin Place includes a 2016 Escher-like staircase intervention in the seven-storey atrium by Fitzpatrick + Partners; The eco-chic new EY Centre at 200 George Street is the headquarters for Ernst & Young. By architects Francis-Jones Morehen Thorpe (FJMT), its curvy form features natural timber and glass

Pictures: International Towers Sydney; Nicole England; Tim Jones; Brett Boardman

LDF 2016 – 10 Fab FizzPicks

With eye-popping numbers of events, it pays to plan your time at London Design Festival carefully. Here are 10 fab FizzPicks for #LDF16


A black-and-white climbing wall, a barge full of interior accessories or an architectural 'megatube' shaped like a smile... 2016's London Design Festival really does have something for everyone, with plenty of fresh creations to blow your mind.

With hundreds of events, and thousands of designs, up for grabs before the festival wraps this Sunday 25 September, #LDF16 is nothing if not intense. The art is to be prepared, hone your hit list, take a tote and ditch those heels (and yes, you may need a few prosecco refuelling stops!). Here are 10 hot design destinations to wet your whistle, but keep an eye on our Instagram feed for more inspiring #FizzPicks.

Whether you're keen to see furniture, fabrics or lighting, design or craft, emerging local talent or established international names, we've got a savvy selection for you. From box-fresh showrooms to vibrant street art, and radical scent design to eco-friendly oases in the city, here's to discovering the unexpected. This year's London Design Festival visual identity branding, by Pentagram, 'celebrates what often goes unnoticed, highlighting detail'. We'll drink to that...

ABOVE: Design fans snap 'Sculpting Scent', a show by Zuzu Mengham and Laboratory Perfumes at The Conran Shop, Marylebone
ABOVE RIGHT: Pentagram's tenth typographic identity for the London Design Festival's promotional materials, in its signature red and white, is inspired by Charles Eames' belief that the details make the design

The Smile
Parade Ground, Chelsea College of Arts, 16 John Islip Street, SW1
Until 12 October 2016

For interactive design that will put a smile on your dial, climb inside 'The Smile' by London's Alison Brooks Architects, one of LDF's specially commissioned Landmark Projects. A 34m-long timber 'mega-tube' that you can inhabit and explore, it's formed from cross-laminated American tulipwood engineered with Arup into a sweeping sculpture, curving up at both ends. Cue airy viewing platforms, a smile shape and grins all round...

Vince Court, N1; Charles Square Gardens, N1; Cnr Pitfield Street and Charles Square, EC1

Until 25 September 2016
Scattered around Shoreditch, Brit architect Asif Khan's three 'MINI LIVING 'Forests' installations offer verdant spots for retreat and reflection. A Landmark Project, these eco-savvy architectural solutions to urban living offer plant-filled 'forest bathing' spots (shinrin yoku), and will host pop-up dinners, workshops, plant exchanges and talks. The project examines ways to activate unused public space in dense cityscapes, creating inspiring 'third places' for social interaction.

Sculpting Scent
The Conran Shop, 55 Marylebone High Street, W1
Until 25 September 2016

'Sculpting Scent', a collaboration between London artist Zuzu Mengham and fragrance innovators Laboratory Perfumes, will seduce design hunters at The Conran Shop in Marylebone. Mengham's vibrant, swirly resin sculptures represent five fragrances through scent and colour, transforming aromas into solid objects. With our regular Looking Glass posts, The Fizz has long championed beauty and perfume design, and this installation has us entranced.

London Design Fair
Old Truman Brewery, 26 Hanbury Street, E1
22-25 September 2016

Dynamic umbrella show London Design Fair, including Fizz faves Tent London and Super Brands, is one of the festival's major Design Destinations. Over four days at East London's Old Truman Brewery, it will showcase more than 500 exhibitors from 29 nations, taking in country pavilions, established brands and emerging talents. Global showcases include the ever-intriguing '100% Norway' (curated by Max Fraser), 'Inspiring Portugal', 'Swedish Design Pavilion' and 'China Academy of Art'. International exhibitions span 'This is India' and the 'British Craft Pavilion' (including Marcin Rusak's sculptural lamps). Connecting British designers with Italian manufacturers, 'Trentino Collaborations' features a monumental granite chair by Max Lamb. Individual exhibitors at Tent include Californian mid-century-inspired furniture brand Bend Goods.

Ready Made Go 2
Ace Hotel London Shoreditch, 100 Shoreditch High Street, E1
Until 25 September 2016

Who doesn't love a monochrome climbing wall? This graphic wonder, the 'Ascension', was designed by London studio Patternity, as one of several 'Ready Made Go 2' commissions installed at Shoreditch's Ace Hotel. Located in the gym, it's a celebration of 'pattern, patience and perseverance.' Curated by Modern Design Review magazine, all the designs were made to be integrated permanently into the hotel, or sold in its shop, including creations by Silo StudioFaye Toogood and Jochen Holz. A gorgeous example are the 'BBQ' tiles by Assemble + Granby Workshop, cladding the seventh-floor bar. The patterns were formed by baking in a barbecue.

Light & Colour
Skandium, 86 Marylebone High Street, W1

Until 25 September 2016
Scandi design store Skandium will showcase 'Light & Colour', launching the iconic new 'Panthella Mini' table light by design icon Verner Panton for Danish lighting brand Louis Poulsen. The size and material are new, and it comes in 11 juicy new colours. Skandium's 245 Brompton Road sister store celebrates the whimsical work of Danish maximalist Bjørn Wiinblad, known for playful ceramic homewares and figurines, as well as textiles and tapestries.

Floating Pop-Up
Bert & May showroom, 67 Vyner Street, E2, and nearby canal barge
Until 30 September 2016

When London design influencers Darkroom traded their cool bricks-and-mortar store on Lamb's Conduit Street for online sales and wholesale we stifled a tear. Now the duo is back with 'Floating Pop-Up', a collaboration with Bert & May. Darkroom's pop-up has taken over Bert's Barge to showcase their new nautically-inspired A/W range of interior accessories and jewellery, while Bert & May's nearby showroom unveils fabrics, a new 'Darkroom Black' paint colour, and modular encaustic tile collection 'Split Shift', which can be arranged in myriad patterns. The three-strong launch celebrates simple geometric shapes – the circle, square and triangle.

Rock Pool
Basement Level, 3 Cromwell Place, SW7

Until 25 September 2016
New York-based Australian photographer Martyn Thompson launches his new 'Rock Pool' collection of upholstery fabrics, inspired by his photos of the ocean. Woven in cotton on a jacquard loom, the abstract fabrics are suitable for upholstery, soft furnishings and wall hangings, and evoke the movement of water, the play of sunlight on sea, and natural rock pools, reflecting Thompson's love of the accidental.

Creative Spaces and Places
Hope Exchange, outside 65 Southwark Street, SE1
Until 25 September 2016

Pattern Queen Camille Walala is all over town for LDF16, literally. The London textile and graphic designer has created one of her signature geo-bright street art works for Better Bankside's 'Creative Spaces and Places', transforming a pedestrian crossing on Southwark Street as part of the Bankside Design District. Walala has also crafted an eye-popping, rainbow Vinyl Lounge for Clerkenwell London store's 'Design Undefined' showcase (155 Farringdon Road, EC1, until 24 September), complemented by Yinka Illori's colourful upcycled chairs. For 'Re-inventing Re-vive', at Natuzzi's showroom (80-81 Tottenham Court Road, W1, until 25 September), Walala reinterpreted the classic 'Re-vive' recliner in bold pattern for a limited edition design.

60 Fulham Road, SW3
Until 25 September 2016

Lovers of 's elegant modern furniture rejoice! The European design brand launches its new flagship showroom in London's Brompton Design District for LDF16, its first in the capital open to the public. Expect to see new additions to Slovenian talent Nika Zupanc's glam 'Stay' range (a bench and dining table), alongside collections by Jaime Hayon and Damien Langlois-Meurinne.
The citywide London Design Festival runs from 17-25 September 2016; see events for individual dates and opening hours. A few extend beyond the official festival.

Workshopped 2015


The Fizz selects standout talent from Workshopped ’15, Sydney’s inspiring showcase of new designers


One of Australia’s longest running design exhibitions, Workshopped is now in its fifteenth year, and is an influential platform for supporting developing designers. It has shared the work of more than 350 designers over the years, including Viktor Legin, whose slim, steam-bent timber LED ‘Balance’ pendant light won third place at 2015’s Milan’s SaloneSatellite Awards.

A showcase for young and emerging Australian talent, Workshopped ’15 Sydney brought together prototype furniture, accessories and lighting (including Adam Cruickshank’s double-hooped LED ‘Ovalite’ pendant, above) from a brace of new names, curated over two floors at interiors store hub Supa Centa Moore Park. There’s still time tomorrow to catch the show, which features more than 50 industrial and product designers responding to the theme of ‘Design in Architecture’. Alternatively, check out our selection of up-and-coming names below…

Top tables
The small ‘Spade’ side table by Simon Colabufalo offers a serious hit of glossy red, combining oak and clean-lined aluminium, colour-matched with custom-turned bolts. Caren Elliss’s ‘T12’ side table celebrates underappreciated terrazzo, usually seen on flooring, but here a focal point on the table top, offering texture and unique pattern with every piece. Marble’s still on trend for furniture, and Elliss feels Cinderella material terrazzo deserves its hour in the sun. Laser-sintering is explored to futuristic, arty effect in the ‘Evolve’ side table, a collaboration by Michael Shepard and Adam Cruickshank. We like its skinny, see-through form and two-tone black and white base.

Stylish seats and storage
Ben Baker’s ‘Apeiron’ origami-esque stool can stand alone but used in multiples it creates a playful geometry. This shapely little number was inspired by sheet metal and tessellation, and is all about flexible function. Baker’s ash-topped ‘Flow’ bench is supported by a continuous loop of hand-bent steel, a sculptural metal spiral that can be powder-coated in a range of colours. It was originally designed using recycled materials from a skip. Bradley Saywell’s sexy ‘SSCT’ (Saywell Storage Coffee Table) caught our eye, with a sturdy yet lightweight steel skin and solid timber table top. A removable textile liner keeps your treasures in good nick. 

Poised pendant lights
Pairing porcelain edged with hand-woven rush grass, the minimal ‘Tao’ pendant lamps by Helen Chen draw on an almost 300-year-old technique and are made by Taiwanese artisans, yet look completely contemporary. Also riffing on nature, Sebastian Damm’s ‘Alga V2 (Beta)’ pendant was inspired by the molecular structure and bioluminescence of algae. A laser-cut shell is layered over an internal diffuser in amber or purple blown glass. Concrete, steel and copper – three key architectural materials – form the sculptural ‘Saddle’ pendant lights by Seaton Mckeon, which team bold form and texture. By contrast, the handcrafted ‘Lattu’ light by Farzin Adenwalla is inspired by Indian children’s vibrant spinning tops, combining a colourful metal frame with a hand-turned teakwood holder. Crafted by local artisans, each jaunty piece is a one-off, available in plated copper/brass and a choice of yellow, red, blue, cream, black, turquoise or lilac.

Accessories with attitude
It’s time for a new-look wall clock, and the ‘Orbit’ by Dorte Bell and Ian Johnson is happy to oblige. The front face forms the minute hand and the passing hours are marked by a chrome sphere orbiting the face. Appearing to float from the wall, its pure, abstract simplicity is influenced by modern architecture and the way the moon orbits the earth and earth goes round the sun. A design store should snap this up in no time! Inspired by nature, Helen Chen’s ‘Forest of Mirrors’ look like little round trees, and reflect and maximise the light in an interior space. They’re made from glass and marble in three sizes. Taking their cue from seductive Venice, Patty Hava’s ‘Invisible Cities’ candleholders have an elegant architectural feel, with precision-cut marble bases and an upper section in hand-cast, polished bronze. Ideal for canapés, the small ‘Chataku’ ceramic plates by Fukutoshi Ueno and Kenji Uranishi were inspired by traditional Japanese saucers. Crafted from Arita porcelain, their pretty, graphic patterns represent the seasons.

Workshopped ’15 is open daily, 9am -5pm, until Sunday 23 August 2015 at Supa Centa Moore Park, corner of South Dowling Street and Todman and Dacey Avenues, Kensington, Sydney

The Broadsheet Restaurant

It’s the last weekend for The Broadsheet Restaurant in Melbourne, so get along to Fitzroy before it pops down…


Pop-ups are getting cannier, and The Broadsheet Restaurant in Melbourne is no exception. After a successful eight-week stint, this stylish Fitzroy space runs until 4pm this Sunday, so swing by for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a drink to sample its wares (no bookings 'natch). The all-day diner is the brainchild of savvy city listings and lifestyle website Broadsheet, which covers Melbourne and Sydney. So just why is it a sign of creative pop-ups to come? Here are our five tips for pop-up perfection:

1: Local, not global 
'From the coffee to the cocktails, the fit-out to the furniture and most importantly the menu, The Broadsheet Restaurant represents the best of Melbourne.' Keeping things local keeps things interesting, and it helps that the location – on Gertrude Street, Fitzroy – ticks the on-trend box.

2: Curate
It's all in the edit, and the restaurant represents the best of the city's drinking and dining, from favourite dishes to best-loved coffee brews and creative cocktails. It's a showcase for Melbourne's most cutting-edge café owners, restaurateurs, baristas and mixologists, and a rare chance to see their work curated together for simple sampling. Delicious dishes on offer come from Anada, Auction RoomsCoda, Estelle BistroFive Points Deli, Grain Store, HuxtableThe Kettle Black, Monsieur TruffePhilippa Sibley, Pidapipo, Pierre Roelofs, Tivoli Road Bakery, TONKATop Paddock and The Town Mouse. How does twice-baked Brioche French toast grab you for breakfast, with fennel poached pears and pear and burnt caramel sorbet? A lunch of roasted yellow duck curry with jasmine rice, or a dinner of cider-poached chicken with pickled pumpkin and spiced cauliflower? And who can say no to a dessert of baked chocolate espresso mousse with cardamon cumquats and cookie crumble?

3: Collaborate
A pop-up is only as good as its collaborators. The Broadsheet Restaurant has teamed up with Small Batch to provide the coffee, with a roster of local roasters. Drinks come care of Fitzroy cocktail kings The Everleigh, who launched four classic bottled cocktails – a Negroni, Martini, Manhattan and Old-Fashioned – at the pop-up, while new South Melbourne fine-diner Lûmé's Sally Humble drew up the wine list, starring interesting local bottles and beers. Welcome drinks in the evening are by  2015 World Class Bartender of the Year Jack Sotti.

4: Design
With restaurant and bar interiors at risk of looking increasingly generic, it pays to choose design partners wisely. Branding studio The Company You Keep designed the Broadsheet Restaurant with architects Therefore Studio, a young Fitzroy practice led by Alex Lake (we liked their work on Tall Timber cafe in Prahran). The resulting look is industrial but warm and sensual, with a clean-lined palette of wood, metal and concrete, graphic pendant lights, and fresh colours from white to blue-grey. There's a choice of intimate tables or convivial stools around a central counter (bar snacks are served). DesignFizz favourite Robert Gordon, a Melbourne-based ceramacist known for minimal, modern stoneware pieces, crafted the neutral-hued, tactile crockery. Indoor furniture hails from Dowel Jones, including the timber and tubular steel 'Full Hurdle' chairs and 'Hurdle' high stools. Bold Australian outdoor furniture specialists Tait, which has stores in Melbourne and Sydney, provided kit for the deck.

5: Vibe
An appealing space needs the X-Factor – atmosphere – and it helps that here Gertrude Street's respected Northside Records supplied the tunes to keep the good times rolling. Soothing landscape photos by Melbourne's Brooke Holm adorn the walls and plants are by Glasshaus, whose signature green styling taps into that indoor-outdoor feel. In a dramatic touch, branches are suspended from the ceiling while verdant potted trees dot the space. They look a little like Christmas trees, and at this foodie-friendly pop-up Christmas has definitely come early...

The Broadsheet Restaurant is at 166 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy, Melbourne, until 4pm Sunday 2 August 2015. Photography by Brook James