Melbourne Design Week is back. While last year the programme explored the theme ‘Design the World You Want’ and asked designers to consider how they could collaborate to create a healthier future, the Melbourne Design Week 2022 programme of exhibitions, installations, talks and workshops invites participants to celebrate the diverse ways design can work towards this better future.

This year there is also a new focal point for Melbourne’s design community: the inaugural Melbourne Design Fair.

Melbourne Design Week 2022: Wallpaper’s highlights

Melbourne Design Fair 

A stand at the inaugural Melbourne Design Fair, during Melbourne Design Week 2022
Installation view of design works on display at ‘Select’, part of Melbourne Design Fair, presented by NGV in collaboration with Melbourne Art Foundation. Photography: Sean Fennessy

Led by National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) and Melbourne Art Foundation (the organisation behind Melbourne Art Fair), Melbourne Design Fair makes its debut with a showcase of collectible contemporary design from over 100 designers and makers.

On one side, ‘Present’ features 13 of Australia’s leading commercial galleries, design agencies and studios, including Broached Commissions, Christopher Boots, Sullivan+Strumpf and relative newcomers to the design scene Gallery Sally Dan-Cuthbert, and C Gallery. Agency Project’s display of works by First Nations makers Regina Pilawuk Wilson, James Tylor and Pedro Wonaeamirri is a standout. 

Wooden artefacts on show during Melbourne design fair, part of Melbourne Design Week 2022
Installation view of Agency Projects, presenting works by James Tylor, an artist of Nunga (Kaurna), Māori (Te Arawa) and European heritage, on display at ‘Present’, part of Melbourne Design Fair, presented by NGV in collaboration with Melbourne Art Foundation. Photography: Sean Fennessy
Display of furniture at Melbourne Design Fair, shown during Melbourne Design Week 2022

Works by Troy Elery on display at ‘Select’, part of Melbourne Design Fair, presented by NGV in collaboration with Melbourne Art Foundation. Photography: Sean Fennessy

The gallery presentations are complemented by ‘Select’, a showcase of Australian designers curated by Simone LeAmon, NGV’s Hugh Williamson curator of contemporary design and architecture. Look out for artist Troy Emery’s hot pink, wallaby-themed collaboration with designer Daniel Poole. 

Until 20 March
28 Duke Street, Abbotsford

Art Book Fair at NGV International

The Art Book Fair returns with artists and publishers including Perimeter, M.33 and architecture and design imprint Uro Publications. This year, NGV Design Store is collaborating with New York institution Printed Matter, Inc to bring a range of exclusive international merchandise and artist books. The fair is also complemented by a full events programme. The hot insider tip is ‘Performing Poetics’, a series of curated sessions exploring language, poetry and performance from Rosa Press, Elena Gomez, Bella Li, No More Poetry, and Incendium Radical Library Press.

18 – 21 March 2022
NGV International

‘Futures Collective’

furniture on display at Melbourne Design Week 2022
Historical palace with striped furniture on display during Melbourne Design Week 2022

Works on display at ‘Futures Collective’ presented by Spence & Lyda during Melbourne Design Week 2022. Photography by Sean Fennessy

Installed in the historic Villa Alba and its surrounding gardens, ‘Futures Collective’ is Sydney interiors store Spence & Lyda’s pick of local and international designers championing facets of sustainable design. Álvaro Catalán de Ocón’s ‘Plastic Rivers’ rugs, made from salvaged PET bottles from the world’s most polluted rivers, are on display next to works by acclaimed local designers including Jon Goulder, Fiona Lynch Office, and Authentic Design Alliance.

Until 26 March 2022
Villa Alba Museum, 44 Walmer St, Kew

‘Primitive Artefact’

Render of furniture shown at Melbourne Design Week 2022
‘Primitive Artefact’ by BayleyWard

Architecture practice BayleyWard is opening its studio to the public with a series of workshops allowing visitors to design and create their own rammed earth artefacts that will be exhibited together at the end of the week. The project uses materials gathered locally, and each location is charted on a map. ‘By mapping the source of the materials, we will demonstrate the benefits of rammed earth as a sustainable construction method, raise awareness of opportunities available within a local precinct, and demonstrate the social and environmental impact associated with procurement of materials,’ states the practice.

Until 27 March 2022
BayleyWard
21-23 Chessell St, Southbank

‘Designing the Circular Economy’

This one-day symposium explores how designers, policy makers, and consumers can accelerate the transition to a circular economy. A ‘pick and mix’ programme allows audiences to select which of the three sessions they attend. Two moderated panel discussions will take a deep dive into the implications of circularity for fashion and product design, and construction and demolition respectively. The day culminates with an international presentation by Singapore-based strategist and urbanist Sarah Ichioka sharing the ideas behind her new book, Flourish: Design Paradigms for Our Planetary Emergency, co-authored with Michael Pawlyn.

22 March 2022
NGV International

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