Melbourne-based collective SIBLING was commissioned to create the exhibition design for Public Offer. The layout was outfitted to recall a sports field – tapping into sport’s quality of the to-and-fro and its social dimension. Wooden bleachers were a significant feature of the design – they offered a place to view the exhibition and associated public programs, other exhibition visitors and they encouraged the dimension of ‘slow’ that is inherent to an exhibition where reading is the primary way to consume what is on display. To that end, wooden gymnastic rings were used as levellers to pull hinged sections of the exhibition tables up and down so visitors are encouraged to find their preferred reading positions –as they can in the domed reading room at the State Library down the street – as well as browse, flick and linger. A netball / badminton court was part of the exhibition, directly bringing the themes of the back and forth of informal exchange and sharing into the room. In the middle of the exhibition was a making space – an open workshop/print shop zone where designers took up residence to make within this exhibition about making, to ‘crack open’ aspects of how a publication is put together and to encourage visitors to create, critique and experiment too.
Kate Rhodes, Curator,
RMIT Design Hub
Timothy Moore, SIBLING
Excerpt from Public Offer catalogue