Take Hold of the Clouds

Catalysing a citywide conversation about the future of architecture, landscape and urban design.



  • Fleur Watson
    Executive Director and Chief Curator for the Centre for Architecture Victoria / Open House Melbourne

Partner organisation

  • Open House Melbourne

Funded by

  • Creative Victoria
  • Besen Family Foundation
  • Moreland City Council

Take Hold of the Clouds is a curated intervention into the 30-31 July 2022 flagship weekend of Open House Melbourne, a public architecture organisation empowering citizens to be active participants in the building of their city.

The longstanding, much loved annual event, Open House Weekend, opens the buildings of the city to its public, allowing an intimate and substantive engagement with a range of architectural sites. Under the leadership of executive director Fleur Watson, Open House Melbourne aims to deepen its remit from one of ‘celebration’ to one of ‘advocacy’, catalysing a citywide conversation about the future of architecture, landscape and urban design through pressing issues facing cities today, including how the built environment contributes to and shapes public life and communities; the relationship between the built and natural world; and how to reveal, reconcile and acknowledge the prehistories and afterlives of places, spaces and buildings.

Take Hold of the Clouds features work by local, national, and international artists, designers, architects and creative practitioners, including Ying-Lan Dann, Fayen d'Evie, Forensic Architecture, Alicia Frankovich, Julia McInerney, Luke Rigby, Cauleen Smith, Snack Syndicate, Ian Strange + Office, and Yue Yang, within the context of Melbourne’s most iconic and significant architecture.

Each of these creative practitioners will examine the built and unbuilt aspects of our architecture to respond to a building, landscape or public space included in the Open House Weekend program. Rather than simply placing artworks in buildings, Take Hold of the Clouds stages a series of thoughtful encounters between artist and architecture, in which each project responds to the form, context, and issues endemic to its site, adding a new layer to how we understand these buildings in the world. These artists and spatial practitioners imagine neurodiverse bodies within buildings, utopian architecture as linked to utopian community building, and the built environment as porous and leaky as much as solid and physical.

Importantly, Take Hold of the Clouds models best practice for high-impact yet sustainable and resource-sensitive exhibition making by using the city as an exhibition space rather than a traditional gallery, and supporting the production of curated projects that are light in footprint.