Melbourne Design Week 2024 activates unexpected spaces across the city

Melbourne Design Week 2024 (until 2 June) returns with a theme of ‘Design the world you want'

Melbourne Design Week 2024 exhibition with squiggly neon light installations in an industrial space
(Image credit: Melbourne Design Week)

Melbourne Design Week 2024 once more provokes the design community in Australia to ‘Design the world you want’. The eighth edition stretches across 11 days (until 2 June 2024) with over 300 exhibitions, displays, symposiums and talks throughout metropolitan Melbourne and spreading into regional Victoria. Alongside big name speakers including Alice Rawsthorn and Tosin Oshinowo, the tenth annual Melbourne Art Book Fair and a pop-up vending machine serving a variety of insect-based snacks presented by lead partner NGV, Melbourne Design Week features a wealth of exhibitions scattered across the city, waiting to be discovered. 

Here is our list of the hottest exhibitions in the most interesting venues to hunt down.

Discover Melbourne Design Week 2024

(MATTERS) at Villa Alba 

Villa Alba, Melbourne, interior

(Image credit: Villa Alba)

Located in the leafy suburb of Kew, the late 19th century Villa Alba Museum has become a staple destination of Melbourne Design Week. This year’s presentation brings together some of Australia’s finest designers including Tom Fereday, Adam Goodrum, Object Density, Kate Benazi and Studio Tops, alongside the exhibition (SOME THINGS) showcasing material samples, interpreted tools and experimental forms.

Until 27 May

44 Walmer St, Kew VIC 3101

 Desire x Design at Useful Objects 

Useful Objects gallery interior in Melbourne

(Image credit: Useful Objects Gallery)

Located at new Melbourne Design Week hub 47 Easey Street – a recently completed Collingwood warehouse conversion by BAR Studio housing a range of creative studios – Useful Objects is a new gallery dedicated to collectible design. Its inaugural exhibition for Melbourne Design Week is exploring design’s relationship to desire. Through materials, ideas and forms, a group of designers including Danielle Brustman & Edward Linacre, Dean Toepfer and Elliot Bastianon question whether the object of desire is the catalyst or endpoint of the human impulse to consume.

Until 15 June

47 Easey Street

Squiggles and Cubes at the Tie Factory

Melbourne Design Week exhibitions

(Image credit: Melbourne Design Week)

Through site-specific interventions, Melbourne-based art Meagan Streader works with light to explore its role in how we experience and navigate space. For Melbourne Design Week she has collaborated with furniture designer Billy Horn to install a collection of functional sculptures in the Tie Factory, a historic Carlton warehouse. 

89 Faraday St, Carlton VIC 3053

Nostalgia at Abbotsford Convent

Melbourne Design Week exhibitions

(Image credit: Melbourne Design Week)

Melbourne-based creative studio Misc Objet are returning to Melbourne Design Week with a presentation of thirteen emerging artists and designers with diverse backgrounds in traditional and unconventional uses of materials and processes. Located in the Oratory in the historic Abbotsford Convent, the exhibition poses the question: How does looking back inspire and shape the future?

1 St Heliers St, Abbotsford VIC 3067

Until 26 May

 A&A at Tolarno Galleries 

Melbourne Design Week exhibitions

(Image credit: Melbourne Design Week)

Mercedes-Benz Australia presented the fifth annual Melbourne Design Week Award to A&A, a collaboration between Australian industrial designer Adam Goodrum and French marquetry artisan Arthur Seigneur, fast becoming regular fixtures at Melbourne Design Week. The Kissing Cabinet presents A&A’s latest work, a visually intriguing cabinet rendered in the centuries-old craft of straw marquetry that reveals hidden forms and secret compartments upon closer inspection.

level 5/104 Exhibition St, Melbourne VIC 3000

Elias Redstone is Wallpaper’s Australia editor and an acclaimed arts leader. He is the founder and artistic director of Photo Australia / PHOTO International Festival of Photography, Melbourne. Previously, Elias was senior curator of The Architecture Foundation, London. He has curated exhibitions for museums and galleries internationally including Barbican Art Gallery, London; Storefront for Art and Architecture, New York; and Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne. His book Shooting Space: Architecture in Contemporary Photography is published by Phaidon.