Contemporary style, design and culture festival Carbon is back this week, presenting a stellar line-up of forums and side events for the second year running. Packed with creatives from a range of countries and design disciplines, the festival brings with it a distinctly international perspective on creative culture.

The main drawcard is the forum program, with four topics covered over two days at Federation Square’s BMW Edge. Kicking off the set, The New Media hones in on the print versus online media debate and looks to social media flag-bearers like Hypebeast’s Eugene Kan to shed light on the subject. Forum B explores the notion of commerce and creativity as partners, featuring talks from street artists DALeast from China and Faith47 from South Africa. Day two of Carbon features legendary NYC photographer 13thWitness, photographer/blogger Yimmy Yayo and Vanishing Elephant’s Huw Bennett across two forums that investigate global brand expansion and social media’s impact on the photography industry.

It’s not just talking heads though – a set of side events will be running in tandem with the forums. The insanely popular Sneaker Freaker swap meet returns to Fed Square’s The Atrium, with a plethora of sneakers, bikes and ripper vintage finds up for grabs. Galleries including Backwoods, RTIST and NGV Studio are hosting exhibitions from artists Chaz, DALeast, Faith47 and more.

The official Carbon Opening Party will take over Roxanne Parlour on Friday, featuring tunes from the likes of former DJ for Jay-Z, Neil Armstrong (NYC), one-man-band Party Supplies and New Zealand DJ collective The ARC. The week rounds out with a live paint session at Fed Square, where the guest artists will come together to work with local street artists to create a mural before our eyes.

Carbon Festival runs from Friday April 27 to Sunday April 29, but side events begin on Wednesday April 25.

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