The inaugural Summer Architecture Commission will be unveiled by John Wardle Architects on 17 September at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV).

Designed as a luminous pink hemisphere of 1350 hand-folded textile blooms, John Wardle Architects’ playful steel, timber and textile structure pays homage to the iconic Melbourne performance venue, the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, with the theatrical design lifting dramatically on high arches to form an open-sided, shaded space.

NGV Director Tony Ellwood explains that the Summer Architecture Commission is an exciting new annual initiative, which allows emerging and established architects and designers to showcase innovative, temporary outdoor installations and structures in NGV International’s Grollo Equiset Garden.

After it is launched by John Wardle Architects, the structure will play host to live music performances by local artists, panel discussions, kids’ activities, picnics and more for all Melburnians to enjoy over summer.

According to Mr Ellwood, the Summer Architecture Commission is one of many upcoming design and architecture-focused exhibitions and events, spearheaded by the gallery’s newly-established Department of Contemporary Design and Architecture, including the reinvigorated Rigg Design Prize and Parallels – Journeys into Contemporary Making, a major two-day international conference on contemporary craft and design practices.

Adaptable and evocative, John Wardle Architects’ structure merges the digital and the handmade, utilising 3D modelling and cutting-edge engineering and fabrication systems to achieve the generous span of a lightweight steel structure.

2015 Summer Architecture Commission: John Wardle Architects will be on display at NGV International from 17 September 2015 till 1 May 2016.

Several public programs are being organised including a members exclusive garden party, panel discussions, and a kids’ workshop.

For further details on public programs, please visit

  • Architects John Wardle Architects (John Wardle, Stefan Mee, Mathew Van Kooy)
  • Engineer John Bahroic
  • Lighting Design Electrolight
  • Lighting System Light Project
  • Landscape Design Oculus
  • Fabrication and Assembly Engineering Directions
  • Textile Skin Megara
  • Paint Dulux