Melbourne Art Book Fair returns for 2019

NGV Girls like us CoversThe annual Melbourne Art Book Fair will return for its fifth year in 2019 from 15 – 17 March, hosting an array of industry talks from eminent international and Australian guests, including Brooklyn-based creative studio Tunica and Berlin-based magazine publisher Girls Like Us.

The three-day fair celebrates local and international publishing and invites guests to enjoy keynote lectures, workshops, a full-day symposium, and a marketplace of book stalls and art displays. Art, design, architecture and fashion publishers worldwide are also invited to register to exhibit.

“The NGV is the largest art and design publisher in the Southern Hemisphere, publishing and distributing thousands of scholarly publications since the 1860s,” said Tony Ellwood AM, Director NGV. “The Melbourne Art Book Fair highlights the role the NGV plays as a global hub for local and international publishers to celebrate the dynamic publishing industry.”

The intersections between fashion and graphic design will be questioned in a full-day symposium hosted by representatives from international guests, TunicaGirls Like Us, and Berlin-based fashion researcher, Femke de Vries.

The symposium will explore how these multifaceted-agencies are encouraging fashion discourse, with examples from Tunica, who expanded from magazine publishing to begin releasing capsule collections, and Girls Like Us, who use the t-shirt as a platform for publication. Tunica will speak about their hybrid practice and the publishing outcomes of these collections, while fashion researcher Femke de Vries will explore fashion and design commodities.

International publishing network Publication Studio (PS), which houses 11 studios across four continents, will make their Australian debut as workshop hosts. Founder, publisher and art director of PS Rotterdam, Yin Yin Wong, and founder and publisher of PS Pearl River Delta (Hong Kong), Elaine W.

Ho will present a workshop responding to experimental publishing, referencing their own studio practice and characteristics unique to their geographical location, along with PS’s holistic approach to publishing and fostering global publishing communities.

The NGVs Great Hall will be taken over by an art and publishing marketplace, and will also feature Fair Exchange – a site-specific project run by Melbourne design studio No Clients. Attendees to the fair are invited to bring along a book to trade in exchange for a curated selection of books by No Clients. The program, which is a way to highlight the value and non-value of books, also aims to explore the distribution of books as not only art or objects, but as forms of currency.

The fair will open the annual Melbourne Design Week – an 11-day initiative of the Victorian Government in collaboration with the NGV. The program offers a unique opportunity for local and international designers, the public and design-led organisations to access a suite of design events, including exhibitions, talks, tours, panel discussions and industry events that respond to the 2019 theme, Design Experiments.

The 2019 Melbourne Art Book Fair will run from 15 – 17 March 2019 at NGV International. Applications for publishers, artists and writers to take part in the 2019 Melbourne Art Book Fair are now open and will close on 2 December 2018. For more information and to apply, visit: for details.

The 2019 Melbourne Design Week will run from 15 – 24 March 2019 at NGV International and across Melbourne. For more information, visit: for details.

Image: Girls Like Us covers (supplied)