Frequently Asked Questions


What is Melbourne Design Week? 

Melbourne Design Week celebrates design in an annual 11-day program of talks, tours, exhibitions, launches, installations, and workshops across Australia’s design capital. The program is driven by ideas through providing a platform for designers, educators, enthusiasts, thinkers, and businesses to come together to share these ideas, show and sell new work, and consider how design can be used as a force for good in an increasingly complex and precarious world. 

When and where does Melbourne Design Week take place? 

Melbourne Design Week takes place from May 18 to May 28 in 2023. The program is held across Melbourne and regional Victoria in cultural institutions, studios, retail spaces, universities, galleries, gardens and public spaces. Check the MDW program when it launches April 2023 for individual event venue details. 

Who is behind Melbourne Design Week? 

Melbourne Design Week is an initiative of the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria, delivered by the National Gallery of Victoria.  The curation of the program is led by the NGV Department of Contemporary Design and Architecture team: Ewan McEoin, Simone LeAmon, Gemma Savio and Timothy Moore with organisational support by Savannah Anand-Sobti and Georgia Smedley. The design sector contributes to MDW through organising and presenting events within the program.  

I want to attend Melbourne Design Week, what do I do? 

From mid-April 2023, you can view the MDW program online for individual event details. Melbourne Design Week is open to the general public and the majority of MDW events are free but may require bookings and/or have capacity limits. Please check back in when the program is available to plan your visit. 

Is Melbourne Design Week accessible? 

Information regarding accessibility at individual venues and events will be available when the program is available in mid-April. As the program is comprised of over 300 events, independent presenters will offer varying levels of accessibility. If you require information regarding accessibility prior to this time, please contact [email protected]. If you require information regarding accessibility at NGV, please visit https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/plan-your-visit/access/access-resources-and-events/.  

FOR PARTICIPANTS 

How do I apply for Melbourne Design Week? 

Applications to participate in the satellite program of Melbourne Design Week are considered via an expression-of-interest process. Applications for the Melbourne Design Week 2023 satellite program have now closed. Applications for the 2024 program will open in late 2023. For updates on Melbourne Design Week, please subscribe here.

How do I apply for the Melbourne Art Book Fair? 

Applications to participate in the satellite program of Melbourne Art Book Fair are considered via an expression-of-interest process. Applications for the Melbourne Art Book Fair 2023 satellite program have now closed. To apply for the 2024 program will open in late 2023. For updates on Melbourne Design Week, please subscribe here.

What are the MDW application requirements?  

The MDW satellite program application requires you to submit ideas for an exhibition, activation, talk, workshop, or tour that responds to the provocation Design the World you Want. Each year, three themes sit under this call-to-action to address the ever-changing opportunities and challenges that designers face. In 2023, these themes are Transparency, Currency, and Legacy. The expression-of-interest application requires the following: 

  • Event description 
  • Concept 
  • Objective 
  • Thematic alignment 
  • Proposed venue 
  • Proposed participants 

If you have any questions regarding your application, you are welcome to discuss this with the team at [email protected] 

Can international organisations or individuals participate in the program? 

International organisations and individuals are welcome to apply and participate in the MDW satellite program. Please note that the MDW team are not responsible for delivering satellite programs and any event proposed by an individual or organization would need to be self-managed within Melbourne or regional Victoria. 

 What are the costs to participate in Melbourne Design Week? 

There are no costs associated with applications to the satellite program of Melbourne Design Week. All costs involved in delivering the satellite program event, including but not limited to venue hire, insurance, speaker fees and speaker related costs, production and technical staff involved in the program, multimedia hire, security, cleaning and staffing for all the program, are to be covered by the satellite program event organiser. 

 When will I find out if my event has been approved for inclusion in Melbourne Design Week 2023?  

You will be notified mid-December via email correspondence.  

 
What are the themes of Melbourne Design Week 2023?  

Since 2021, Melbourne Design Week has celebrated the potential of design to transform our environment – from the inside our homes to the entire planet – with the call-for-action for individuals and organisations to ‘Design the world you want’. This provocation asks designers to think outside the status quo to face the multiple challenges that encircle us: loneliness, climate disasters, social inequity, and the cost-of-living. Under this thematic, designers will demonstrate what design can do, what more it can do, and what can it do differently.  

Each year, three pillars sit under this call-to-action to address the ever-changing opportunities and challenges that designers face. In 2023, these pillars are transparency, currency, and legacy, which ask participants to think over time and scale to design the world they want. 

For more of the 2023 themes, head here.

What do I do if I have forgotten my Melbourne Design Week password?  

If you have forgotten your password, please go to the login page and then click on “Forgot Password”. 

What important dates and deadlines should I consider? 

26 September 2022 Expressions of Interest open  

26 November 2022 Expressions of Interest close  

Mid-December 2023 Successful participants notified  

Mid-February 2023 Deadline for event information to be uploaded to the MDW website  

April 2023 Program launch 

18-28 May 2023 Melbourne Design Week