By delicately combining domestic and exhibition space, visitors to this gallery are provided with a unique, intimate experience of art.
The transformation of this apartment provides a new space for Funaki, a gallery specialising in contemporary jewellery and objects. In displaying items that are worn or take their place within a home, it made sense that the gallery itself should be a combination of domestic and exhibition space. Following the gallery/apartment model seen in cities such as Paris, Hong Kong and New York, the idea was to place these objects in the context of everyday life, bringing with it a more intimate, personalised experience of viewing art.
Located at the rear of a converted garment warehouse on Flinders Lane, the ambition of the design was to create a unique experience within the city, one that surprises a first-time visitor and holds the qualities that draw them back. To do this, the architecture responds to the project’s location, the relationship between the home and the gallery, and the small scale, detailed – and often delicate – nature of the objects and jewellery exhibited.
The architectural legacy of the original building – its tall spaces and large windows – provides an abundance of natural light. With domestic elements drawn tightly into the apartment’s centre, soft light infills the available space. Materials such as leathered granite and black formply give the kitchen an indistinct, abstract quality that is continued into the bathroom to provide a seemingly sharp delineation between gallery and home. Running the length of the apartment, exhibition display shelving lifts the objects towards the viewer, its light, linear character in opposition to the dark mass of the kitchen and bathroom.
In setting up this opposition, exhibiting artists can then explore its threshold; a pivoting display wall closes off or opens up the kitchen to the main gallery space, objects can feature on display shelves within the bathroom and bedroom.
The overall design intent is to create a gallery-like home and home-like gallery; a light-filled, abstract oasis within the city.
- Full Services
Project Director: Simon Whibley
Project Team: Jacqueline Tang
Photographer: Shannon McGrath
Wurundgeri Country / Naarm / Melbourne
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