After its first year in 2017 the now-annual Melbourne Design Week is back from March 15 to 25. The 11-day event – which started as a collaboration between the NGV and the Victorian Government's Creative State strategy – presents, explores and celebrates design, and promotes Melbourne’s position as a world design capital.
This year's guiding concept, Design Effects, offers both local and international design innovators a platform for their creations and thoughts on the wide-reaching effects design has on contemporary life.
Although the NGV's various buildings will be hubs for many of the talks and exhibitions, the festival will be scattered throughout the city.
With a huge range of events to choose from, here are some of the highlights.
Diminishing Elation – by Geronimo
Balloon artist Geronimo will present her first ever Australian installation at The Hub General Store, as well as at Hub Furniture's new showroom in Abbotsford and in the windows of their now-closed Exhibition Street showroom. The installation will cover the 30-metre facade with her signature balloon designs. Geronimo's client's include A-list celebrities Kanye West and Gwyneth Paltrow, and her work has also been on the runways of Chanel.
On display March 15–25.
Marcus Fairs – Designing a Better World
Editor in chief of internationally acclaimed design publication Dezeen Marcus Fairs will present a one-off lecture at NGV International. Fairs will reveal how he sees design shaping the world around us.
Melbourne Art Book Fair
The beloved Art Book Fair will be opening Melbourne Design Week with its fourth annual event. Since its debut it has attracted over 50,000 visitors, making it the most visited publishing event in the Asia-Pacific region. With over 60 stalls, the fair will present some of the world's best art, design, photography and architecture publications and will host free discussions, book launches and workshops.
Ornament is Fine – by Ben Landau and Lucile Sciallano
Melbourne ceramists Ben Landau and Lucile Sciallano challenge modernist trends in design with their exhibition at NGV Australia. It features a display of 3D-printed pieces including teapots, mugs, vases, doorknobs and taps, and explores the future possibilities of 3D-printed ceramics.
On display at NGV Australia from March 10 until July.
Elliat Rich and Dale Hardiman are each known for their rigorous conceptual design. For this exhibition Rich draws from her experiences living and travelling through Central Australia. Colours, movement and textures of the Australian outback will be visible in a number of furniture designs from the designer.
On display March 15–24.
For this exhibition local artist and designer Hugh Davies is informed by "necrotelephony" – communication with the dead. This exhibition is more an homage to the living history of the "spirit phone", something inventor Thomas Edison once wanted to build in order to speak to those deceased.
Melbourne Design Week runs from Thursday March 15 to Sunday March 25 at the National Gallery of Victoria and various partner venues around Melbourne. Full program and more information available here.
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This article was updated February 22.