The Melbourne Fair 2018, will be held at Caufield Racecourse, Thursday 9 – Sunday 12 August. It will feature more than sixty of Australia’s best dealers of antiques and twentieth century vintage collectables, who adhere to the tenets of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century styles collectively known as Modernism.
They are otherwise known in the world of design history and the decorative arts as stylistically, Arts and Crafts (1875-1915), L’Art Nouveau (1890-1910), Northern European Jugendstil (1899-1910) Vienna Secession (1897-1906), Wiener Werkstatte (1903-1933), German Bauhaus, Modernists (1919-1933), Art Deco (1906-1940) and the Union des Artistes Modernes (1929-1940).
Modernism had a preference for open planned living, seeking to concentrate solely on geometry, uninterrupted lines and form. Over a thousand unique objects will be showcased in a price range that will allow many to access something special, across a range of quality furniture, fine fashion and jewellery, as well as luxury goods.
The revisited classical design style known as Art Deco which became fashionable in the inter war-period (1918-1939), will be a highlight across all disciplines of art and design.
The movement took its name from the first major international exhibition of decorative arts held following World War 1 – L’Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Modernes held in Paris in 1925, catering to the demands of mechanised production with sleek machine-like forms becoming very popular.
The Art Deco style became a reflection of the intellectual and philosophical concerns of the time in which it evolved and documents a society struggling with the added pressures of limited space, rising costs and the emotional impact of global warfare, which demanded a new age of hope and promise be born.
Timbers such as Amboyna, a rich, honey-coloured timber and Beech, a pale cream, close-grained wood became popular with furniture designers and particularly chairs historically, became about so much more than seating.
The rage for simplicity had begun with local designers embracing the now familiar pared-back language of European modernism, creating stylish and sculptural pieces – furniture as art – something to aspire to.
By the end of the 1940s ‘contemporary’ houses in Melbourne in particular, were incomplete without an essential piece of ‘equipment for the home’.
A considered favourite were a pair of chairs by Grant Featherston, which found their ideal setting in the mid-century architecture of the period with their sleek uncluttered appearance.
They became essential to a new mode of cosmopolitan living, favoured following World War II, helping revolutionize the contemporary Australian interior.
Pierre Cardin, Emilio Pucci, Helen Rose and Christian Dior are only some of the exciting fashion labels to be featured in runway shows, featuring a retrospective of iconic Melbourne Cup Fashions on the Field dresses and sensational sixties designer clothes.
An absolutely fabulous couture piece from Coutura Vintage, features a fabulous coat by Jean Patou in the early 1960s, would certainly be wonderful to wear in Melbourne’s cold weather
If you wish to go back to the future, then The Melbourne Fair 2018 is a great place to start.
Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2018
Thursday Night Opening
9 August 6.00pm – 9.00pm
Friday, 10 August 11.00am – 6.00pm
Saturday, 11 August 10.00am – 6.00pm
Sunday, 12 August 10.00am – 5.00pm
Indoor Concourse Space,
Gate 23, Station Street,
Images courtesy The Melbourne Fair