Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Australian Design Museum Exhibition

Top - Mark III + IV carbon chairs (original prototypes), 2008/09, Blakebrough + King. Bottom - Double Dutch side table and Harvey chair by Khai Liew. All pieces pictured here are included in the Australian Design Museum Exhibition opening in Sydney tomorrow.

Habit Chair (original prototype), American Oak, by South Austrailian designer Takeshi Iue

Designer, retailer and design curator Sarah King (aka Sarah K) is one of those insanely efficient and driven creative people who seems to have about 5 fulltime jobs on the go at any given time.

Sarah and her partner Ben Blakebrough design furniture under the label Blakebrough + King, and in 2006, opened their tiny museum-like design store Arp in Hobart... a brave and much-loved local design hub which served as a showroom for Blakebrough + King's own work as well as a showcase and meeting point for local designers. Whilst in Tasmania, Sarah also created the Hobart Design Index.

Last year Sarah and family moved back to NSW... and it wasn't long before her entrepreneurial spirit and passion for Australian design inspired more design-based projects! Here Sarah launched the brilliant SOHI publication with fellow TDF fave Rebecca Wolkenstein (blogged here)... and then of course there was her FABULOUS Pop Up Co Op design store in Bowral at Christmas-time - an inspired collaboration with master-crafter Tamara Maynes, and Monique Germon of *Public Office.

But it appears Sarah K is just not quite busy enough, because this month she's launching yet another stellar side-project! The Australian Design Museum Exhibition is a slice through Australian design in all it's forms - it brings together a highly collectable range of work by Australian furniture and industrial designers, graphic designers and crafts people, and all pieces in the show are prototypes or limited editions. Sarah has worked tirelessly to curate this diverse pop-up museum-style show - a first of it's kind for Australia, because unlike many design exhibitions of this kind, all pieces are available for sale! It's a brilliant opportunity to view a fabulous cross-section of Australian design, and to perhaps purchase a beautiful, functional piece of local design history that will increase in value over time. If you are in Sydney you should surely pay a little visit... (I am going this weekend!)

The Australian Design Museum Show
Shapiro (view the catalogue and price-guide online)
162 Queen st

Opens Wed 24th Feb (tomorrow!).
Exhibition Runs Feb 25th - March 7th 2010
Open 11.00AM - 5.00pm daily.

Man. I have a suspicion that Sarah K must wake up at about 5.00am everyday. And I thought I had a problem with side projects! :)

PS) Sarah's previous home in Tasmania is in this month's Inside Out magazine (styled to perfection of course by everyone's fave interiors stylist Megan Morton).... AND what's more, Inside Out's intrepid blogger Lee Tram Lam just posted a great little interview with Sarah about the show yesterday!

Left - Peek Freans poster by NSW artist Donald Fish, 1956 (reissued 2010 as silkscreen on archival paper). Right - Hopscotch artwork by Mark Gowing, Show and Tell 2008, silkscreen on archival paper. (both pieces available in limited editions of 10)

Elliot the Bookscreen (original prototype 2008) and Siena the Book Block Table 2010, both by Samantha Parsons of Studio Sam.


  1. Hey, thanks for the truly lovely mention, Lucy, and nice to see the show get coverage on your excellent blog, too! It looks like an amazing show, I wish I had the chequebook to match my wishlist – daydream-buying will suffice for the moment!
    Lee Tran
    PS I agree, I don't know how Sarah does it, she's quite the superwoman with her time.

  2. oh how I love the Book Screen! I've seen them in person in an array of colour combinations (all of which were perfectly juxtaposed!). The nature of the old fabric-clad books gives this new-made structure a unique mod-antique feel. And it's practical to boot!

  3. that looks like a wonderful exhibition, i wish i could fly around the world to Oz! thanks for sharing, and i hope you have a wonderful week my dear!

    xo urban flea :)

  4. Love Donald Fish's poster and have passed it on. Where do I get one?