'Image credit: John Gollings'
'Image credit: John Gollings'
5 Oct 2017 / News
Our picks for MPavilion 2017

Now in its fourth year, MPavilion is a temporary civic space, cultural laboratory and event hub that brings a four-month program to the Queen Victoria Gardens in the centre of Melbourne’s arts precinct.

The 2017 pavilion is designed by acclaimed architects Rem Koolhaas and David Gianotten of international firm OMA. Koolhaas and Gianotten’s design has created a reconfigurable amphitheatre topped by a translucent, floating roof. Underneath the roof are two tiered grandstands. One is fixed and planted with indigenous flora; the other is a rotating bleacher that can function as either seating or a stage, making for permeable configurations suitable to a variety of events and performances.

There are so many exciting events scheduled in the MPavilion program, which includes the heavy-hitting MTalks, MMeets (communal gatherings such as “dog meet dog” and regular yoga and meditation mornings), MMusic (free gigs and “aural experiences”), the young-people-friendly series MKids and MProjects, which places site-specific art installations in the Queen Victoria Gardens.

There is heaps on, but here are four events to get you started.


MMusic, Friday 13 October, 6pm–9pm

Assemble Papers launch


MPavilion joins with design publication Assemble Papers for the launch of a special metropolis-themed print issue. The issue looks at some of the people, ideas and movements that are shaping the way we live as local and global citizens of the built environment. Building on the 2017 Living Cities Forum that the Naomi Milgrom Foundation, the founding organisation behind MPavilion, hosted in July, the magazine features articles on thought leaders OMA, tiny houses in Los Angeles and the planning challenges facing Melbourne. Better still, it’s an evening launch with a DJ set from Louise Terra of Melbourne band the Sugar Fed Leopards.


MKids MMeets MTalks, Wednesday 8 November, 10am

Designing the age-friendly city


Australia has an ageing population and this raises issues of civic participation, medical care, transport, entertainment and accommodation. Multi-disciplinary architecture collective Sibling Architecture presents a full-day workshop on ‘Designing the age-friendly city’. In the morning, artist Tai Snaith runs an intergenerational workshop for grandparents and children; in the afternoon, professional services consultants Arup explore how tech and personal experience can be harnessed to create all-ages environments; the day concludes with an evening session from University of Melbourne’s Hallmark Ageing Research Institute, bringing together experts to discuss how the city can be shaped to become more age-friendly.


MTalks, Friday 10 November, 6pm

Friday night debate: Australian Institute of Architects and emerging architects


‘The digital is more influential than the physical in architecture.’ What do you think? New to MPavilion in 2017 is a Friday-night debate series. It’s hosted by the Australian Institute of Architects and pits established practitioners against emerging talents. This Friday’s moot brings together Mel Bright (MAKE architecture), Andre Bonnice (WOWOWA), Ben Milbourne (Bild Architecture), Amy Muir (MUIR Architecture), Adam Pustola (Lyons) and Claire Scorpo.


MProjects MMusic, Friday 8 December

Matthew Bird: An Immersive Encounter with the Afterlife


As part of the art installation series MProjects, artist and experimental architect Matthew Bird will transform MPavilion into an immersive exploration of the afterlife. On this opening Friday evening, a commissioned performance by composer Daniel Von Jenatsch and choreographic artist Phillip Adams (BalletLab) will activate a celestial field of reimagined carillon bells with the aim of summoning the transcendental and otherworldly. Bird’s installation is on until Friday 22 December.


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