Frieze x Melbourne Design Week present Museums as Agents of Change

Presented by Frieze x Melbourne Design Week

A digital discussion with Bea Leanza, Brendan Cormier and Ewan McEoin, moderated by Beatrice Galilee

In a time of crisis – social, health, climatic – how can design institutions effect real-world change? How can they best support game-changing projects and new ways of thinking? What roles do commissioning and collecting, respectively, have to play? And how might we reimagine collaboration across organizations to increase impact? 


Beatrice Leanza is the executive director of the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (maat) in Lisbon. She is a curator and critic with a background in Asian studies and was based in Beijing for over 17 years where, among others, she acted as the creative director of Beijing Design Week (2013–16) and co-founded of The Global School, the first independent institute for design and creative research established in the People’s Republic of China.  

Brendan Cormier is Senior Curator of Exhibitions and Special Projects at the V&A, London, where he is currently leading on the museum’s ‘Pandemic Objects’ series. He has curated several major exhibitions for the museum, including ‘Cars: Accelerating the Modern World’ (2019–20), the V&A Gallery in Shenzhen and ‘A World of Fragile Parts’ for the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale. He has also produced several publications for the museum including Copy Culture: Sharing in the Age of Digital Reproduction (2018).  

Ewan McEoin is Senior Curator of Contemporary Design and Architecture at the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. His curatorial projects include the NGV Triennial (2017 and 2020). He curates the annual NGV Architecture Commissions series and leads Melbourne Design Week, Australia’s leading international design programme. 

Amy Sherlock is deputy editor of frieze. She was the curator of the annual Frieze Art & Architecture Conference, which ran between 2016–2020. She is based in London.