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MPavilion Will Return Next Month, Hosting Over 250 Fantastic Events For Its Longest Season Yet

This year, the famed architecture commission returns to the Queen Victoria Gardens, with a jam-packed program of talks, music performances, art, workshops and experiences.
By Libby Curran
November 04, 2021
By Libby Curran
November 04, 2021

For the past eight years, the annual MPavilion design commission has gifted Melbourne with a rotation of unique, architect-designed temporary structures, which each then play host to a summer-long festival of free events. This year, after 2020's COVID-related diversion from the norm, MPavilion will return to its usual setting at the Queen Victoria Gardens from December 2 — and it's kicking off a jam-packed five-month appearance to celebrate.

Titled The LightCatcher, the new-season commission is the work of Venice's MAP Studio. It takes the form of an urban lighthouse, featuring a network of steel tubes and light-reflecting mirrored panels that appear to float above the earth.

The structure will get quite the workout, too, playing host to a program of over 250 free talks, workshops, performances and installations, running until April 24, 2022. Each month will focus on a different theme, but there are events to delight music-lovers, design fiends, art nerds and everyone in between. Read on to get a preview of the fantastic program.

An event at MPavilion 2019

There'll be design-focused conversations with a swag of local and international names, from MAP Studio's Francesco Magnani and Traudy Pelzel with Grand Designs Australia's Peter Maddison, to globally-renowned design collective Space Saloon.

MPavilion's supporting program of residencies, MProjects, will include the launch of Patricia Piccinini's hot air balloon sculpture ​​Skywhalepapa, the return of Indigenous architecture forum BLAKitecture: The Manifesto, and a deep-dive into 'the salon', featuring a pop-up nail bar.

The program's sonic delights include a slew of Melbourne Music Week events, as well as a series of meditative morning performances by Deborah Cheetham AO, and talks and DJ sessions led by Andee Frost.

Erik Yvon's uniform design, captured by Marie Luise Photographer

Elsewhere in the program, you can catch a seating installation by Castlemaine furniture studio Like Butter; experience author Monique Grbec's reinterpretation of Pink Floyd's iconic rock opera The Wall through an Indigenous lens; and learn about the ancient practice of astronomy within Indigenous Australian Nations in a chat with Gomeroi astrophysicist and host of 3RRR's Indigenuity, Krystal de Napoli. Plus, the MPavilion Wedding Day will host ceremonies for three lucky couples whose previous wedding plans have been smashed by COVID-19.

Throw in a masquerade ball, a DJ program, and collaborations with the likes of Melbourne Fringe, TarraWarra Museum of Art and Melbourne Theatre Company, and your MPavilion calendar is looking very full indeed.

And, with no detail left to chance, the specially-commissioned staff uniforms are the work of local fashion designer Erik Yvon.

Find 'The LightCatcher' at Queen Victoria Gardens, Domain Parklands, St Kilda Road, Melbourne, from December 2–April 24. The supporting MPavilion program will feature alongside these dates, with an additional offering of online events from Tuesday, November 23. Head to the website to check out the full program and learn more about this year's commission.

Top Image: Render of 'The LightCatcher' by MAP Studio, MPavilion 2021. Deborah Cheetham AO, by Wayne Quilliam.

Published on November 04, 2021 by Libby Curran

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