Chief Executive Officer
“It’s a privilege to be a part of the phenomenon that is MPavilion. While keeping art and architecture at the centre of its focus, MPavilion is a powerful catalyst—a responsive, ever-evolving space that speaks to the needs of the time with incredible public programs that generate ideas, support creatives and engage communities.”
Sam’s been with MPavilion from the start. As Operations Manager from 2014-17, and then as CEO since 2018, Sam is passionate about the pivotal role MPavilion plays in bringing design, architecture and art to the people of Melbourne.
Over the course of a career in senior roles at the Naomi Milgrom Foundation, White Night Melbourne & Ballarat, Flot & Jet, Creative Production Services, Federation Square, Melbourne Fashion Festival, the Melbourne Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony, Keating! The Musical, and Jack Morton Worldwide, Sam feels the array of projects he has collaborated on all have a common thread: phenomenal creative vision, with extraordinary technical and operational challenges. Using the blend of production, business, logistics and operational skills he has developed over 20 years in event production and project management roles, Sam lives to bring outstanding creative concepts to life.
“Each year I am taken by surprise by what we set out to achieve with the program and how it morphs and evolves over the season. MPavilion’s collaborators are paramount to this. It’s a place that fosters connections; a platform that releases and resolves ideas; a space to play and dance.”
Drawing upon her extensive experience in curation, arts management, community engagement, and event production, Jen attends to the details of MPavilion’s delivery with imagination and attention in her role as creative director.
Originally from London, Jen was the Victoria & Albert Museum’s program manager, curating the Friday Late program for two years before migrating to Melbourne. Previously, she worked across arts education and community engagement for organisations such as the Royal Academy of Arts, and the Louis Vuitton Young Arts Project. Jen’s experience in public programming extends from the Tate London’s Late at Tate to the British Museum, and ‘PopRally’ at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Before Jen joined the team at MPavilion, she also worked with the National Gallery of Victoria and the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival.
“MPavilion is a truly democratic space. A place that invites people from all walks of life to come together and participate in meaningful interactions that actually shape our city.”
With extensive experience working with firms and clients in Britain, Europe, the Middle East and Asia, Alexandra brings a wealth of expertise to her work as communications director of MPavilion.
Formerly a director at communications firm Edelman, vice-president of communications at Louise Blouin Media, and development director at the Louise Blouin Foundation, Alexandra has also worked with the United Nations, Macquarie Bank, HSBC, ADACH, China’s Ministry of Culture, Christie’s, Venice Biennale, Art Dubai, Abu Dhabi Art, Sharjah Biennial, Design Miami/Basel, PAD Fairs, Stella Art Foundation, Brunswick Arts, Kandinsky Prize, YSL, Chanel, Mont Blanc and Absolut.
“MPavilion is such an important civic space—one that allows for the free exchange of conversation and ideas. Working here allows me to actively collaborate with a group of humans around some of the biggest cultural questions facing our city today.”
A legend of the Melbourne arts scene, Paulie has been a member of the MPavilion family since 2016, starting in the front of house team before moving into the role of site manager. Before he came on board at MPavilion, Paulie worked as the event manager at the iconic Carlton venue, Bella Union.
In between MPavilion seasons, Paulie can be found enjoying the quiet life in Castlemaine, or flexing his event management skills at Meredith Music Festival and Golden Plains. Wherever you find him, he’ll bring positive vibes, good music, and an excellent taste in socks.
“As an architecture graduate who ‘went rogue’ into the world of art in public space, I feel that MPavilion encompasses so much of what matters most to me. It brings solidarity and inspiration to people in all disciplines to challenge, question and change the way they work, while nurturing creativity, entertainment or simply offering shelter to any human who stumbles in its way.”
Molly’s background in architecture has given her a particular passion for the power of space, and the ways it can bring people together.
A creative producer of public art events and projects, Molly is a seasoned player in the worlds of event production, community engagement, design and architecture.
Before joining the MPavilion team as program producer, Molly was program producer at Testing Grounds, coordinator of RMIT University’s Contemporary Art & Social Transformation Research Group, creative producer of Gertrude Street Projection Festival and Bendigo Projection Festival, and a freelance producer for a range of public facing projects.
“I love the concept of people stumbling upon an MPavilion event on their lunch break or walk to public transport after a long day, and engaging in thought-provoking conversations about design, architecture, culture and art within a structure that is an artwork in and of itself.”
A production specialist whose experience extends across large outdoor events, community festivals, public art, street parades and exhibitions, Mack became MPavilion’s operations manager in 2020. From bringing desert landscapes alive for Parrtjima Festival in Alice Springs to guiding floats down the Sydney Mardi Gras parade route, Mack has developed a unique set of operational skills to make any creative vision possible. Other credits include City of Sydney Council, Midsumma Festival, Vivid Sydney, Sydney Writers’ Festival, Newtown Festival, and Floriade NightFest.
And when they’re not working, you’ll probably find Mack with their dogs, in nature or with baked goods (or all three at once).
“For me, MPavilion immediately conjures all the very best ‘i’ adjectives: inclusive, inspiring, inviting, iconic, impassioned and intimate.”
As office manager of MPavilion, Gabriela catches everyone’s airborne ideas and arranges them into beautifully mapped-out plans.
A master of multi-tasking and getting things done, Gabriela has dabbled in many fields, across many continents. She was operations manager at Fieldwork—an innovative and sustainably focused architecture practice—and before that, she co-founded Pop Plant, a plantscaping business, specialising in the greening up of urban spaces in Melbourne. Gabriela has worked as a producer on large-scale film productions in Peru and Bolivia, including Ice Road Truckers and the American Bachelor, and has extensive experience in editing and translation. She has also free-lanced for various publications, including a stint as stand-in-editor for Assemble Papers, editor for the English version of the online cultural events magazine Le Cool in Barcelona, and contributor and researcher for Moon Handbooks in Peru.
Social media manager
“I’ve loved MPavilion since I first stumbled upon it in its original location in The Queen Victoria Gardens. To me, this ever-adapting public space encapsulates all that is incredible about Melbourne. It supports the arts and design, while also fostering broader cultural conversations. These dialogues are invaluable to the vibrancy of the city, and to our overall lives.”
Springing from a wealth of experience in arts marketing and administration, Rob creates dynamic and engrossing digital content in his role as MPavilion’s Social Media Manager. He took on the task of engaging with MPavilion’s wide audience in the midst of 2020, bringing a whole new level of accessibility and scope to the cultural laboratory’s online presence.
With a great passion for events that bring the value of arts and culture to broad and diverse audiences, Rob has experience in marketing, programming and writing roles at organisations that include 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art (Sydney), Chunky Move, Midsumma Festival, ACCA, Fairfax Media and Media Express.
When he’s not checking out the latest art event, Rob is probably taking a wander through nature, or reflecting on life over baked goods.
“To me, MPavilion has always felt like a multifaceted, community-driven space. I love how approachable yet eclectic the programming, audience and design each year is. I also love sitting on the grass nearby with a cold one!”
Founder of Hope St Radio—a digital radio station which has become a celebrated part of the Melbourne music scene—Pete joined MPavilion in 2020 as music curator.
In a career humming with the love of sounds and community, Pete has also curated live events for Melbourne Music Week, Next Wave Festival, A Weekend With, Peroni, Coburg Night Markets, Collingwood Yards, & Assemble Papers. Pete also works as the Music Supervisor for the historic, multi-faceted venue, King & Godfree.
When not working on things music-related, Pete enjoys cooking, natural wine, and riding the dirt bike with his two small children.
Copywriter & copy editor
“MPavilion is about presence. Being properly together. Whether it’s in person or on a screen, being with the reality of another human—not their name, not their title, not their organisation, but the individual themself—can be an incredible way to understand, build upon or even dissolve what abstracts us to each other.”
Written, read, spoken or sung, words are some of Genevieve’s favourite things.
As MPavilion’s copywriter and copyeditor, Genevieve is the one who puts the cultural laboratory’s words together—or runs her eyes over them before they go out into the world. The rest of the time, she can be found fussing with words in some other way; writing short stories, pouring over books, singing lyrics, or having long conversations with friends.
Besides wrangling them for MPavilion, Genevieve has done words for Smith Journal, ABC News Online, The Good Copy, The Big Design Market, FAB9, Clemenger Group, The School of Life, and PHOTO 2021.
Sarah Lynn Rees
Sarah is a Palawa woman descending from the Plangermaireener and Trawlwoolway people of north-east Tasmania. She is a Charlie Perkins scholar with an MPhil in Architecture and Urban Design from the University of Cambridge where she produced a thesis on Indigenous housing in remote Australian communities. Sarah is interested in the Indigenous design space and is currently working with Jackson Clements Burrows Architects and MPavilion. Sarah also sits on EmAGN, the AIA Editorial Committee, the National Trust Landscape Reference Group, the National Trust Aboriginal Advisory Group and is a director of Indigenous Architecture and Design Victoria. Sarah is MPavilion’s program consultant.