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DESIGN & STYLE

MPavilion 2019

This year's white lantern-like structure will be lit from within — and host over 400 free events throughout summer.
By Libby Curran
November 11, 2019
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MPavilion 2019

This year's white lantern-like structure will be lit from within — and host over 400 free events throughout summer.
By Libby Curran
November 11, 2019
  shares

Melbourne's Queen Victoria Gardens have scored a crisp, white new addition, with this year's MPavilion winner. A minimalist design by celebrated architect Glenn Murcutt AO has been chosen as the annual commission's 2019 champion. It marks the sixth MPavilion in the design series, which sees a new temporary structure erected in the inner-city garden each spring.

As Australia's only Pritzker Architecture Prize laureate, Murcutt boasts some serious design skills, with a special knack for creating buildings that make efficient use of their site and climatic conditions. Some buildings of his you may be familiar with include Newport's modern Australian Islamic Centre, the Berowra Waters Inn in NSW and the Bowali Visitor Information Centre in Kakadu National Park.

For his MPavilion, Murcott designed a rectangular structure with a translucent roof fabric stretched across wing-like trusses. Its curved top is lit from within like a lantern, while two open sides offer views of the city skyline and the Yarra. According to Murcutt, the understated MPavilion was inspired by a sleek aircraft wing he once sheltered himself under on a trip to Mexico, and plays to his own well-known motto of 'touch the earth lightly'.

The structure will make its home in Queen Victoria Gardens across summer. During its residency, it'll be used as a 'design and cultural laboratory', playing host to a diverse program of workshops, talks, performances and installations. You'll be able to swing by every Friday night from 6pm for the Sunset Series, with live tunes from local DJs and musicians, and some Tuesday mornings for free one-hour yoga sessions.

Elsewhere on the program, there's a life drawing class with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, book club with artist Eugenia Lim and a performance by contemporary dance company, Chunky Move. A series of Indigenous design forums, talks on sustainable living and dog walking adventures are some of the other exciting events on the diverse lineup.

An on-site kiosk will also be open from 9am daily, serving up Three Thousand Thieves coffee, Four Pillars Gin, wines by ShadowFax and Sample beers.

To check out MPavilion's full 2019–20 program, head to the website

Images: John Gollings

Updated November 13, 2019

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