With the help of local creatives, the University of Canberra and a robot called Yuri, the DESIGN Canberra festival launched on Monday.
The event saw Civic Square transformed, most notably, with a large temporary architecture pavilion created with the use of digital and robotic technologies by the University of Canberra's staff and first-year architecture students.
The project couldn't have been completed without the use of technology as each of the structure's pieces needed to be cut and drilled in just the right places by Yuri the robot for the intricate design to work.
It is because of this reliance on digital technologies that University of Canberra associate professor in architecture and project lead Max Maxwell said the pavilion challenged the idea that craft can only be associated with handwork.
"The working title of the pavilion is called the dark crafts pavilion, not only because it's black but also because of the use of digital and robotic technologies that underlie the design and construction of the pavilion," he said.
"All of the elements are unique - there are 346 of them and they're all made out of cardboard tube and all water protected in a water-based sealant.
"All of the tubes are similar in that they are all obviously round tubes of cardboard but their holes and the orientation of the holes are specific to each tube so it can only go together in one way.
"Our role in that is to effectively position tubes within the robotic work cell, and Yuri the robot will do the rest."
The festival launch also unveiled a ground mural created by Canberra artist Megan Hinton and the Mapping Canberra Project which will see Sydney's Peita Blythe illustrate a map of the capital from Civic Square over the next three weeks.
Now in its sixth year, the festival's program has employed the theme of 'utopia' to showcase the city's love of design through more than 200 events - making it the biggest DESIGN Canberra to date. While the festival's events are spread across the city, Civic Square is intended to be the heart of the festival, with numerous events taking place over the course of the festival, including artists' talks, fitness sessions and art classes.
"If we have contributed a catalyst that changes the way that people perceive this particular space then we've done a pretty good job," University of Canberra associate dean education, faculty of art and design Erin Hinton said.
"As a whole, the festival is a great opportunity for emerging and established designers for people to recognise their work but I think selfishly, for us it's that one time of year that we all get to work together in this big collaborative group and something special is going to happen when that's the case."
- DESIGN Canberra runs until November 24. For the full program and ticketing go to designcanberrafestival.com.au.