Home' Scoop Homes and Art : Insite 28 Autumn 2011 Contents INSITE AUTUMN 2011 61
Art, design, food, drink and more come together in one of the
city’s most exciting heritage-building revamps WORDS Rick Murphy
ustralia’s newest art and design
concept space has opened on
Queen Street in Perth’s CBD.
Set amid a wedding cake
crush of tumbledown buildings that line
the short, narrow west-end street, Venn
is a multi-level, multi-purpose venue
incorporating an art gallery, design
store, art studios and a bar/cafe.
The project has been a labour of love for
co-founders and creative directors Desi Litis
and Jade Rubino, who began the process of
renovating and refurbishing the century-old,
three-storey building in early 2009 when
they enlisted the services of Perth-based
firms Matthews Architecture and, a short
time later, interior design specialists Geyer.
Their vision has been beautifully realised.
The completed design and fitout effortlessly
blends the old and the new, with original
features (pressed tin ceilings, steel beams,
polished floors and wooden staircase)
set against modern glass and tiled walls.
Interior void spaces allow glimpses to the
studios below and the galleries above.
The Venn mission statement aims to
“support and strengthen the arts in Australia
by providing a platform for emerging and
established artists and designers”. The
upstairs gallery will offer a year-round
exhibition program in a vast open space
that includes a feature courtyard and
easily configured second gallery zone.
Below street level are four st udios that will
be sub-leased on application, where local
and visiting artists can practise within a
supportive and inspired environment.
The ground-floor level houses the Venn
shop, a showcase of cutting-edge and
innovative design from throughout the
world, with more than 70 brands on display,
including lighting, furniture, children’s
toys, executive men’s products and a range
of contemporary lifestyle buys.
Jade Rubino emphasises the importance
of selection: “Everything in the shop
has been sourced on merit rather than
price or fashion. Products were chosen
on the principles of form, function and
environmental soundness. Whether an item
costs $10 or $1000, the same attention to
aesthetics and function applies.”
Venn is a public space, with its cafe and
bar operating alongside the shop through
opening hours. There is an entrance to the
building from Queen Street, and side access
Links Archive Insite 27 Summer 2010 SHA 29 Winter 2011 Navigation Previous Page Next Page