Design – Vienna Design Week 2019, Austria’s largest and most international design festival, takes over the city with more that 120 design events, installations and exhibitions until October 6. Directed by the festival’s co-founder Lilli Hollein together with Tulga Beyerle e Thomas Geisler, the 12th edition of Vienna Design Week narrates the role of design as a pivotal cultural agent in everyday lifestyle routines.
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VDW 2019 headquarters in the Althan Quarter
Every year, Vienna Design Week explores a different neighbourhood. This year, the festival HQs are located in the Althan Quarter in the ninth municipal district. Since 1978, the area has been a hotspot of urban planning as well as the biggest and most love-or-hated urban development project. As this year’s location partner, 6B47 Real Estate Investors AG will open the doors to the well-known but never before publicly accessible building above the station Franz-Josefs-Bahnhof.
Here QWSTION showcases an installation featuring Bananatext, the first technical fabric made purely from Banana plants which are organically cultivated in the Philippine highlands. Patonic software company and Benjamin Kromoser present the Opti-Knot-3D Pavillon, a wooden framework with 3D printed knots. EOOS developed an outdoor shower for the Vöslau spa which recycles the used water by means of a plant-based treatment system.
Passionswege: crafts meet design
The Passionswege exhibition platform showcases collaborations on equal terms between designers and Viennese crafts and artisan enterprises. Studio Sain teamed up with with Viennese woodturning atelier Drechsler Hermann Viehauser to create a contemporary design collection questioning the role of crafts in the digitalized era. Plastic palms, pastel lettuce leaves, a car radio, a greenish chunk of glass; the set pieces used by the Finnish designer Teemu Salonen in his works developed with Glas Bauer seem to come from the most remote nooks of everyday life.
Urban food & design
The festival and Vienna Business Agency engaged the city’s creative professionals with a challenge to submit solutions addressing the topic of food consumption. Jakob Glasner presents a contemporary silverware project while Orlando Lovell interviewed chefs and cake-designers, and explored Vienna infamous cake and coffee culture to co-craft statement gourmet compositions.
Guest country: Finland!
Finland is 2019 Guest Country. Tero Kuitunen curated the Wild at Heart exhibition featuring the work and collections of 11 Finnish designers and brands ranging from textile and wood design, artworks and design objects. Along-side “wild humour“, Kuitunen’s show is also inspired by “rough beauty” and design as a social factor. On show works by Eero Aarnio, Klaus Haapaniemi, Antrei Hartikainen, Teemu Salonen, Aamu Song and Johan Olin and Milla Vaahtera.
The Stadtarbeit / City Work format features 5 concept design projects addressing social issues. Mechthild Ebert, Elina Kränzle and Jonas Malzahn have created urban coaches inspired by Sigmund Freud’s one which invite people to relax, share thoughts and reflect on urban coexistence. SISI – the Speculative Institute for Social Intervention SISI tests new pathways in urban design through the connection between concrete and digital space.
MAK Museum hosts the exhibition project CLIMATE CHANGE! From Mass Consumption to a Sustainable Quality Society. 5 design installations explore new ways of life with which we can contribute to a ceasing of the exploitation of resources, a reduction of harmful emissions. The exhibition is part of the Vienna Biennale programme of exhibitions.
Austria meets Finland, research meets business, manufacturing meets automation. Students from the Aalto University in Helsinki showcase and test their work and research approachesexamining the connection between automated and robot production. On display will be thesis works by Jaakko Hyvärinen and Dario Vidal which examine the various arrangements within the man-code-machine paradigm.
The game design focus wants to represent the local game development scene and its work in manifold ways as well as to create a hub providing reciprocal interactions as well as contacts with international partners, other fields of design and the business community. On show, the puzzle game Old Man’s Journey by Broken Rules, the point-and-click adventure The Lion’s Song by Mi’pu’mi Games, the multiplayer racer Light field by Lost in the Garden, and the dystopian business simulation Spinnortality by James D. Patton.
All images: courtesy of Vienna Design Week 2019.