A New Normal

A New Normal

Photographer: Kristoffer Paulsen


Melbourne, Australia


NGV Melbourne Design Week


Part of a $50 million pitch to investors



Traditional Custodians

Bunurong and Wurundjeri people

A New Normal was an exhibition featuring fifteen installations and talks by leading Australian architects and designers challenging Melbourne to become an entirely self-sufficient city.

As part of Melbourne Design Week 2021 and led by Finding Infinity, Fender Katsalidis’ idea explored retrofitting existing buildings by wrapping them in a quilt of insulation. A vibrant and visceral representation of energy efficiency demonstrated how simple fabric-first strategies can stop heat flowing in and out of existing buildings.

As fabric-first upgrades drastically reduce the energy footprint of existing buildings, Fender Katsalidis proposed full Passive House retrofits, which replace inefficient glazing, seal gaps and add appropriate insulation to protect the indoor environments from external extremes.

The idea proposed building resilience into cities without having to start from scratch, using knowledge and technology we already have as part of a plan to transform the city.

In a bid to improve comfort, improve health and slash emissions, the exhibition’s aim was to normalise a culture of valuing our existing structures for what they are and unearthing their hidden potential to be part of our thriving, low impact future.

The 2021 Melbourne Design Week Award, presented by Mercedes-Benz, was awarded to A New Normal.

Photography: Fender Katsalidis
Photography: Fender Katsalidis

Leadership Team: