Sunday, 8 July 2012

The Fortynine Studio Launch

Friday night saw the launch of The Fortynine's new design studio on Oxford Street. A big supporter of the design collective, I interviewed two of its members back in November 2011 (read it here) so I was thrilled when I got the invite to check out their new home.

The Fortynine is Ben Elbourne, Lauren Austin, Carly Hush, Harriet Watts and Sarah Spackman. Recently Elbourne and Austin were in Melbourne to produce a collaborative work with Ehsan Khoshsima, a Sydney based architecture graduate. The Light Shed was constructed in Federation Square and remained there for three weeks during which the public were encouraged to interact with the work. Discussing the work with Elbourne he mentioned that one of the great moments was the second they removed the barriers. Suddenly a child was there cheerfully stomping all over the work with his father slightly more hesitant. During the launch of the new studio a video of this work was screened along with other projects.

The space itself is quirky and clean. The work on display is fantastic and I left wishing I had bought more than one item in the room. Products produced by The Fortynine will be sold through the design concept store He Made She Made and Oxford Street Design Store just a few doors down. Spaces are shared with other designers and there is a real sense of collaboration which had good friend and ex- The Paper Mill Director Si├ón McIntyre saying "I wish I was in The Fortynine- they're so nice!" And she's right- they really are the nicest people. Perhaps that will be the secret to their success. That, and the fact they're bloody good at what they do.

Speeches with Ben Elbourne 

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