A Future Design Experiment
Architecture, Curation, Urbanism, Cultural Placemaking, Research
Type: Temporary Public Art Installation
Client: National Gallery of Victoria
Location: Fairfield Amphitheatre, Melbourne
Materials: Water, Timber, Polycarbonate, Translucent Fibre, Fog Machine, LED lights
Collaborators: Collective Futures
Partners: Studio Structure
Sponsors: Addition Studio, IKEA, Mayde Tea, Bodriggy Brewers
Located at the base of a bluestone amphitheatre designed for theatre and performance, a pavilion is encircled with a shallow body of water and undulating veil of mist. When passing through this threshold to access the intimate interior, the visitor steps out of their role as an observer, and becomes a theatrical element of the space.
The design concept materialised through the study of intimacy. By taking a simple architectural form and experimenting with scale, opacity and climate, a humble yet transcendent space is created which softens the world around it; filtering external light, air, sounds and views to create a quiet place for contemplation.
An architectural placemaking experiment inspired by sauna culture, the work investigated how design can tackle the rethinking of spaces in response to changing social and urban conditions. The work was activated for a period of 24-hours with an arts and culture program incorporating performance art, music, sensory experiences, tea ceremonies, and ceremonial rituals. The project included social research, with insights gained from over 250 visitors in the form of questionnaires and long-form interviews to inform the future of public space.