It might sound like the name of a comedy club, but Howler is not limiting itself to just funnies. Instead it’s going to be a multi-disciplinary performing arts centre, located in suburban Melbourne, beginning with the opening of phase one – a seriously nice bar and beer garden that fuses city life and rural environment.
Splinter Society Architecture took on the landscaping at this former wool store in the rapidly developing Brunswick suburb. A steel tree mimics real ones in the garden lounge, lights hang like fruit from the ceiling, a zebra wallows on the brick wall outside. Throughout there is a blending of natural and man-made materials and motifs that helps integrate the wilderness elements into their alien new home. Inside the bar an endlessly intermeshed geometric installation repeats as bottle shelves. The airy space takes on a tropical warmth when the sun goes down, brought about by the rich red lighting. It’s already got our attention, and when the performance areas are up and running, Howler will be an even bigger noise in the Melbourne arts scene.