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Issue 60 - The Kitchen and Bathroom Issue

Issue 60

The Kitchen and Bathroom Issue

HABITUS has always stood ahead of the rest with a dedicated Kitchen and Bathroom issue of exemplar standards. For issue 60 we have taken it up a notch with our Guest Editor the extraordinary, queen of kitchen design, Sarah-Jane Pyke of Arent&Pyke, speaking directly to Kitchen and Bathroom design with some increadable insights.

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Melbourne Design Week 2024 – your guide to the highlights
CultureAlice Blackwood

Melbourne Design Week 2024 – your guide to the highlights

Melbourne’s epic Design Week is almost upon us. I put it out to my friends and colleagues, to find out what they can’t wait to see, and have collated a top highlights list for you here.

What do you love most about Melbourne Design Week? Apart from a full calendar of talks, exhibitions and launches booked in from dawn to dusk, it’s the promise of discovery that I crave most. Material experimentation, conceptual product design, open-forum discussions between all levels of industry, institutions and even government, exhibitions and events that draw back the curtains on difficult topics. Melbourne Design Week delivers it all in spades.

It’s encouraged in large part by the design week’s theme of ‘Design the world you want’, which might be better described as a call to action. A challenge and invitation to designers to use their skills to drive positive change, reimagine existing systems, and offer innovative solutions to pressing global challenges.

So what new-world ideas and propositions will we discover in the next two weeks of this Melbourne design maelstrom (23 May-2 June)? I put the question to a few industry friends and colleagues, and consulted with my own diary of events, and have pulled together 10 top program highlights for you here – in no particular order.

Ross Gardam, Volant Wall Light.

1. Equilibrium presented by Ross Gardam studio: an exhibition

Ross Gardam explores the fundamental equilibrium of form and mass with a presentation of the Mass Table at ‘Le Space’. The table is a quiet experiment that has come out of the studio, with an intention to form future production objects. Discover the natural and industrial forms that come together in the design of this collection of seven tables. Accompanied by Gardam’s modern chandelier, Volant, gone extra large. Cool! More here

BAR Studio, 47 Easey Street, photography by Peter Bennetts.

2. BAR Studio’s Open House, Friday 24 May, 1-4pm: a tour

You may have already read about BAR Studio’s new Easey Street headquarters in Fitzroy. The building stands as a collaborative village, where a community of accomplished creatives, makers and designers co-inhabit. You can take a wander through and discover this new Fitzroy creative hub – and there are still spots left for guided tours. More here

BAR Studio, 47 Easey Street, photography by Peter Bennetts.

3. Holder presented by Trove Workshop: an exhibition

Thanks to the team at Versa studio for this tip on Holder, an exhibition featuring the work of eight emerging craftspeople from multiple disciplines. It explores our relationship to the items we choose to surround ourselves with and the value we place on them. Presented at Mural Hall, Abbotsford. Check out Trove’s Instagram, and the MDW event page.

4. Reinvigorating Melbourne at Reine & La Rue: panel with lunch

Ok it’s time for me to plug one of my own events, an exclusive lunch and panel discussion hosted by Nomad Group at Reine & La Rue. We’ve invited four visionary leaders of Melbourne’s creative and cultural scene to join us for a panel discussion, in which we’ll explore bold ideas for bringing Melbourne to life.

Book a ticket for your team and your clients and enjoy a sit-down lunch with paired drinks while hearing from Hannah Fox of Rising – Melbourne’s electrifying festival of new art, music and performance; Rebecca Yazbek of hospitality institution Nomad Group, renowned for its beloved Melbourne restaurant Reine & La Rue; Dr Bree Trevena who works at the very edge of critical futures and built environment practice with Arup; and Katya Crema of HIP V. HYPE, which is redefining the way we build and live through ethical, socially conscious and environmentally sustainable property development. More here

Reine and La Rue.

5. (Matters) At Villa Alba: an exhibition

Visit Matters at the beautiful, ornate Villa Alba. Witness the museum’s ornate chambers and living spaces transformed into a prolific fusion of materials, concepts, and characters. I would seek out the (Somethings) group exhibition first, which sheds light on the creativity inherent in experimental design processes.

Then, linger and explore the wider museum at your leisure, with work presented by Tom Fereday, Freeman Gallery, Adam Goodrum, Jon Goulder, Marlo Lyda, Innate Collection, Object Density, Kate Benazi, Studio Tops, Dean Norton, Jordan Fleming, Design by Them with Elliat Rich, Ben Mccarthey, and Zella Casey Brown. More here

6. Design as an attitude with Alice Rawsthorn: keynote lecture

Hear from the one and only, Alice Rawsthorn OBE in a keynote lecture at NGV. Celebrating the release of NGV’s latest book, Observations: Moments in Design History, award-winning design critic and author of Design as an Attitude, Rawsthorn shares her vision of how digitally empowered, politically engaged designers are addressing the complex challenges facing us now, and in the future. More here

7. Warmer by Charlie White: an exhibition

Charlie White always has something interesting to show us. This year he offers us an exhibition that investigates refinement rather than invention. Through the iteration of one lamp realised in different sizes and materials, Warmer comprises a series of lanterns that explore the way light permeates through a range of materials and scales. The exhibition enjoys the luxury of being able to share one idea as a suite of prototypes rather than as a single object. More here

Pleated Lamp by Charlie White.

8. Refuge: an urban resilience hackathon

This just sounds fun! Refuge explores the roles that parks and civic infrastructure play in creating more resilient cities and communities. The event brings together a coalition of partners (Arup and SHFT SHFT and RMIT College of Design & Social Context) with a treasure trove of datasets to support innovative applications and analysis.

Over two days of interactive action, teams will come together to produce a working prototype responding to a civic resilience challenge within the hack timeframe. This event is for professionals and students in architecture, design, engineering, policy, AI generative design, social impact and resilience. Assemble your team of three to five and register your interest.

9. Rubbish on the shore: a symposium

This cross-cultural think-tank explores design solutions for ghost net and associated marine debris impacting Indigenous communities and Sea Country across Northern Australia. A three-day think-tank has just been held on Miwatj Country with Indigenous leaders from over 20 First Nations rangers groups, and a delegation of experts from educational institutions, professionals working within the design and architecture sectors, material scientists, marine biologists and data analysts.

Now, Agency Projects and NGV invites us to join them for a series of insightful conversations where we unpack lessons learned and how design thinking and collaborative conversation can seed solutions to the issues impacting Australia’s oceans and waterways. Be part of the change! More here

10. Australian Furniture Design Award: an exhibition and competition

This year’s shortlisted finalists for the award have been invited to present their realised designs for exhibition and judging at the Stylecraft showroom during MDW. The winning designer will receive a cash prize of AUD $20,000 and an invitation to develop a commercial range or product with Stylecraft. Let’s see what Australia’s furniture designers have in store for us. More here

11. Circular presented by Daniel Boddam, an exhibition

In Circular, Daniel Boddam’s artistic furniture pieces explore the transformational potential of waste materials gleaned from construction sites and the fashion industry. Boddam finds beauty in the remnants, repurposing them into refined sculptural and functional objects. In turn, he challenges the production norms of luxury commodities and where we find and attribute ‘value’.

12. Crux presented by Christopher Boots

Christopher Boots investigates the profound mysteries of the cosmos with Crux, the latest luminaire series from his lighting studio. Having made its debut at Milan Design Week 2024, Boots is now presenting Crux in Australia. It explores the natural geometries of the five stars that form the Southern Cross – one of the most recognisable constellations in the southern sky. 

Christopher Boots, CRUX Milan, photograph by Annika Kafcaloudis.

13. Atelier and Collectivity Talks

Sorry, we lied about there being 12 highlights – here’s a bonus one. Atelier and Collectivity Talks are presenting a series of panel talks as part of Material Matters 02, an innovative exhibition re-imagining a sustainable circular future for retail spaces. Nexus Designs, Arup Victoria, Breathe Architecture, UPPAREL and KFive furniture are all set to be involved, with a particular highlight – ‘Science x Design: The Future is Biofabrication’ – involving Nexus Designs Director, Sally Evans.

Material Matters exhibition, photograph by Pier Carthew.

There are literally hundreds of events in the MDW 2024 program (23 May-2 June), so this is just a drop in the ocean of discovery awaiting you next week. Ask everyone around you what they are going to see, and do some early research here.

Melbourne Design Week

Another MDW 2024 highlight with Visnja Brdar

About the Author

Alice Blackwood

Alice Blackwood is the Editorial Director at Indesign Media, and Editor of Indesign magazine and She is a trained journalist and editor, with a background in branding and communications strategy. For more than 15 years Alice has been a passionate advocate of the architecture and design industry within Australia and the wider Indo-Pacific region. Through her work on international design festivals, regional awards programs including the INDE.Awards, as well as in print and digital media, she has helped establish numerous major platforms that recognise and celebrate the region’s most exciting architecture and design, and elevate those industry leaders into the global spotlight. “Our region’s design is defined by its fresh, yet hungry entrepreneurial spirit, its bold thought and brave actions, the flawless execution of complex ideas, and world-leading outcomes. I’m fascinated by all the moving parts of our architecture and design community – the businesses, the brands, the big-thinkers and everyday-doers.” Alice remains an active member of the Australian design and media industries as a Moderator, MC, Judge, Commentator, Mentor and Advisor. Among her main passions are workplace design, education design, healthcare design, wellness design, hospitality design and the business of design.


adam goodrumAgency Projectsalice rawsthornAustraliaAustralian Furniture Design AwardBAR StudioBen MccartheyCharlie WhiteDean NortonDesign by Them with Elliat Rich

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Issue 60 - The Kitchen and Bathroom Issue

Issue 60

The Kitchen and Bathroom Issue

HABITUS has always stood ahead of the rest with a dedicated Kitchen and Bathroom issue of exemplar standards. For issue 60 we have taken it up a notch with our Guest Editor the extraordinary, queen of kitchen design, Sarah-Jane Pyke of Arent&Pyke, speaking directly to Kitchen and Bathroom design with some increadable insights.

Order Issue