Regeneration was among the topics at the heart of Vienna Design Week 2023, the right event this year in its 17th edition. It was a multi-site affair, where the ideas of emerging designers coexisted with projects by established brands, creating a common ground where design is a tool to “shape the world, make it sustainable to create meaningful relationships with products, spaces, people, and open up new perspectives,” as Gabriel Roland, the event’s director told us.
The Postsparkasse building, erected between 1904 and 1912 to a design by Otto Wagner, has housed the headquarters of the University of Applied Arts since 2017. It is one of the most important works of Viennese Modernism, characterized by a façade covered with granite and marble slabs, stainless aluminum, both inside and outside. On the occasion of the 2023 edition of Vienna Design Week, in the hall of the building, more precisely in the spaces for the cash counters, the former students of the university, in collaboration with Angewandte Interdisciplinary Lab (AIL), presented a project reflecting on the theme of mass consumption related to the gift shops present in museums. The concept of “Exit through the gift shop” is upended as “Entry through our Werkshop to the practice of art and design”: here the objects can all be purchased on site.