This week within the heart of the city, Hamish Munro revealed his innovative installation paying homage to the unique cultural history of Melbourne at Melbourne Central.
Melbourne Central’s General Manager Just Shannon, Interior and Industrial designer Jean-Pierre Biasol and The Kisho Prize Mentor’s Melissa Loughlan of Utopian Slumps celebrated the launch of the impressive six by three metre installation on Level Two of the designer precinct attracting consumers and art fans alike.
The Kisho Prize is a design initiative launched by Melbourne Central that celebrates the Centre’s rich architectural history whilst supporting Melbourne’s young creative talent.
Hamish Munro was one of five finalists asked to submit a concept and present to an expert panel of judges including Melbourne Central’s General Manager, Justin Shannon, Melbourne Central Cultural Correspondent Lucy Feagins of The Design Files, RMIT University Head of the School of Art Professor Jeremy Diggle and respected art and design journalist Dylan Rainforth.
Munro’s submission is an inflatable sculpture fabricated from a thin, digitally printed nylon fabric, surrounding a steel armature that contains air. The work responds to the constant change in its surrounding environment, acting like a living organism. Visitors to Melbourne Central will collectively and unknowingly control the form and mood of the sculpture. As they enter and exit the Centre, data is collected and translated into a computer program that controls a shift in formation within this sponge like sculpture.
Munro describes his work as a physical response to how individuals indirectly control and form changes within Melbourne’s CBD. “Melbournian’s movements and choices contribute to the city’s growth and ever changing architectural landscape. As they move in and throughout shared spaces, new areas of congregation within the city are activated. These spaces can be seen as new pods or modules of life, connecting to pre-existing pathways, lanes, buildings or streets. My vision of Melbourne’s city is a constant evolution driven by the people who live in it, which is reflected in my proposed artwork,” he continued.
Munro’s winning design also references Kisho Kurokawa’s Nakagin Capsule Tower in Toyko, Japan, completed in 1972. This famous Tower realises the ideas of the Metabolism architectural movement through its organic construction and concrete interchangeable pod arrangements.
As the winner of The Kisho Prize, Hamish was presented with a $10,000 bursary award plus a production budget of $30,000 to bring his submission to life.
“Hamish Munro not only provided a unique response to the brief but an interactive design that engages with the broader community, living with the city. His design techniques were stand-alone and his concept is thought provoking,” Diggle said.
Mikio Kurokawa of Kisho Kurokawa Architect & Associates in Japan, and the son of the design great, has expressed his respect for the initiative that celebrates his father’s designs whilst supporting emerging talent.
“The Kisho Prize is indeed a respectful project which provides more opportunities for people with creative vision. My father was eager to foster not only his apprentices but also many talented junior architects. I am very pleased my father’s name is aligned with such a wonderful prize,” said Kurokawa.
Melbourne Central is delighted to host Melbourne’s newest landmark and to bring this innovative design come to life. “Melbourne Central is proud to contribute to Melbourne’s rich architectural history and support emerging design talent with the installation of this artwork,” Justin Shannon said.
Hamish Munro’s installation can be found on level two of Melbourne Central here: http://www.melbournecentral.com.au/