MPavilion 2019

Glenn Murcutt

MPavilion is Australia’s leading architecture commission and design event held in Melbourne. Each year the Naomi Milgrom Foundation commissions a temporary pavilion from a leading international architect to house a four-month free program of talks, workshops, performances and installations from November until March in the city oasis of the Queen Victoria Gardens.

Built on collaborations, MPavilion is a step beyond the museum concept. It is a cultural laboratory and utopian space that encourages design, debate and cultural exchange. MPavilion’s cross-disciplinary program brings together local and international celebrated practitioners and theorists—from across fields of architecture, performance, fashion, science, art, technology and music—to undertake new collaborations, perform and present artistic works and engage in forward-thinking discussions around social and environmental change.

The brief outlines the importance of promoting architecture through developing a leading contemporary architectural event in Australia. MPavilion 2019’s architect, Glenn Murcutt AO, is internationally respected for his environmentally sensitive, distinctly Australian architecture. MPavilion 2019 relays Murcutt’s longstanding interest in buildings that make efficient use of site and climatic conditions.

This year’s MPavilion consists of a climate responsive rectangular plan with steel frames supporting wing-like trusses covered in tensioned translucent fabric, resulting in a buoyant white roof. Open along its two long sides, MPavilion is adaptable to most weather conditions, and a diverse public event program.

The south facade is fitted with electronically operated fabric blinds that provide a level of weather protection when required. At each end of the pavilion are alcoves, membrane-lined externally, with timer-slat pivot doors internally. The eaves of the roof have a stainless-steel garnet-bead blasted finish creating a slick, sharp finish to the roof perimeter. The concept and design create a dynamic platform that actively engages with the urban landscape and where ideas about architecture, design, and creativity are encouraged and nurtured through interaction with the community.

Furniture: Chris Connell with Grazia & Co. Lighting: Bluebottle with JSB Lighting.

Photography: John Gollings, Anthony Richardson