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SENSES WORKING OVERTIME

SENSES WORKING OVERTIME

It should be nothing if not cacophonous. ACMI transforms into a video arcade for its Winter Masterpieces exhibition Game Masters. Featuring 125 different games and profiling 30 designers, ACMI's downstairs gallery has been designed as an open plan. "It's very much intentional," says designer Clare Cousins. Rather than have people shut off from others with headphones, it's all about people interacting and watching people playing games. Alongside acoustic issues, Cousins' brief requires it be easily demountable, as this is ACMI's first international touring exhibition. (New Zealand is its first port of call). Cousins has designed three areas dance central, indies, and game changers. Rather than respond to any particular game, the overall look of the gallery, with its colour blocking and hanging webs, takes its cues from electrical cables, neon and colour spectrums. Seatbelt webbing will wrap throughout the gallery, extending in bands of colour around Federation Square itself. "The sensory overload is going to be pretty crazy," says Cousins. Game Masters, ACMI, June 28-October 28.

RECIPE FOR SUCCESS Amid the plethora of award-winning cookbooks jamming the shelves, how do you make yet another stand out? The recipe that won cover design of the year at the Australian Publishers Association's 60th annual Book Design Awards in Sydney last night was Daniel New's design for The Art of Pasta. His combination of illustration with photograph captures the handmade quality of its subject. It also won Best Designed Cookbook. The Best Designed Book, in toto, went to Toko for the Powerhouse Museum catalogue Love Lace: Powerhouse Museum International Lace Award. In an age of e-books the judges' choice is perhaps a strident endorsement for the power of print: "A striking cover, two different paper stocks, a foldout poster, eye-catching colours and text that reflect the philosophy behind the museum exhibition ... this book is a winner in every way." publishers.asn.au

A FEW IDEAS Multi-award-winning book and magazine designer Jenny Grigg was only a finalist at this year's Australian book design awards. But the creative eye overseeing Peter Carey's classic letterpress and paperfolded covers is among the must-see speakers at agideas next week. Other highlights include the Canadian illustrator Marian Bantjes, who presents her intricate take on the world, as does local hero Shaun Tan. An insight into the workings of the famed Fabrica Design Studio will be given by previous agideas Newstar winners. In Life after Fabrica they explain how completing a Fabrica residency has helped their careers. Canadian David Berman delivers his charter on behaving ethically, while Art Paul, the original art director of Playboy, should have some interesting tales on behaving badly. May 21-25, agideas.net

RAY EDGAR (ray.edgar@bigpond.com)

LET THEM WEAR FARTHINGALES The subtext of Karl Lagerfeld's cruise collection for Chanel, presented to a brace of celebrities against a backdrop of spurting fountains at France's Palace of Versailles was not subtle. Models crunched along the hot gravel paths in ice-creamy coloured tweeds and pale doubled denim worthy of a modern Marie Antoinette. Classic Chanel tweed jackets were tailored to skim the torso and counterbalance volumes below waist and hips. Frocklets and culottes were foofed and frilled, ruffled and tiered with farthingale-esque swells over the hips. Lagerfeld's message was both joyful and arrogant, situated as it was, on the lip of another financial Euroquake. His "Let them eat cake" references were unmistakeable: the opulent location, the models' OTT makeup, their powdery pink, grey and blue bob-cut wigs. Even Lagerfeld appeared like an omen, in grey instead of his customary butler's black. Frock up, for tomorrow you may not be able to afford to. JANICE BREEN BURNS

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