MOTEL Sydney Design Week

Strathfield NSW Australia

When comedians and design aficionados Tim ‘Rosso’ Ross and Kit Warhurst put on a show, you can bank on it being a hilarious romp within the framework of an architectural and social critique. Rosso’s fascination (and ours too) lies with modernism - its influence on and reflection of modern culture, and not many typologies speak to that connection better than motels.

SJB director Tristan Wong was invited to curate an experiential installation within the Town and Country Motel - the location of the first shows for Rosso and Kit’s nationally touring show titled MOTEL.

Looking out for the glow of the gaudy roadside sign (or the well worn patterns of a breezeblock wall), charging dinner to a Diners Club card and then fighting over the Coco Pops from the variety pack in the morning - these are some of the memories that inspired the nostalgic interventions into and around the motel rooms.

The grand gesture of the installation was a two-tone breezeblock wall of 200 blocks, installed into the strangely lengthy living space of room 307. Video art was shown on portable orange TV sets, while others were projected onto blinds and the side panels of the classic white Mercedes parked by the front door. Variety packs of cereal inspired the kitchen installation, with some highly ‘instagrammable’ moments involving Froot Loops and Rice Bubbles. A curated selection of photos lionised classic motels (set in overly-lacquered, 70’s timber frames) linking the experience to other examples of the motel typology, both grand and banal.

Thank you to Brickworks and Sydney Design Week for their support.

Projection artwork by Claudia Damichi

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