Dezeen promotion: an exhibition of Austrian design was presented beneath a translucent vaulted ceiling at Milan's La Pelota during this year's Salone del Mobile furniture fair (+ movie).
Now in its sixth year, the Design Pioneers show featured just under 70 exhibitors that each showcased works designed and made in Austria.
The aim behind this year's event was to present an overview of innovations and trends emerging from the country. To do this, works by the Austrian design students were presented alongside established designers and companies.
Products included a set of pastel coloured glassware by Glashütte Comploj and a bathtub made from a single block of oiled nut wood by Nina Mair.
Organisers Advantage Austria chose to return to La Pelota – the event space that provided the venue for the 2012 edition – in the Milan design district of Brera for this year.
The space was designed and curated by Vienna studio Vasku & Klug, which also created the setting for last year's exhibition.
Influenced by monumental museums and sculpture galleries, the studio took a minimalistic approach when creating an arched structure over the space to ensure that the focus remained on the exhibits.
"The structure was clear and transparent and aimed to bring the exhibits under the spotlight and provide an appropriate setting for the exhibition," explained the organisers.
The exhibition took place during Milan's design week from 14 to 19 April – see more of Dezeen's coverage of the event.
Read on for more information from Advantage Austria:
Austrian Design Pioneers, Fuorisalone 2015
The concept behind this year's Austrian design exhibition was dedicated to pioneering design spirit
With just under 70 exhibitors participating, including 31 designers, 32 companies and five students, Austria's contribution to this year's Salone del Mobile and its Fuorisalone side programme was more extensive and exciting than ever before. At the heart of Brera, Milan's design district, in the renowned event space of La Pelota, Austrian design was the star attraction from 14 to 19 April 2015 under the banner of Austrian Design Pioneers. The Austrian design exhibition was organised by Advantage Austria, the Austrian foreign trade promotion organisation, and curated and designed by Vienna based studio Vasku & Klug.
Contemporary overview of the latest innovations and trends in design
The framework conditions and prerequisites for pioneers in design have changed over the last few decades. Based on the tradition of Austrian design and architecture pioneers such as Adolf Loos, who reformed modern architecture, Carl Auböck, the style pioneer of the post-war period, Hans Hollein, the pioneer of the post-modern phase, and Coop Himmelblau, the forerunner in deconstructivism, pioneering services in the 21st century are increasingly being driven by adding expert knowledge, passing on experiences and conveying ideals.
The aim of creating something new that has never been done before unites most designers; this often goes hand-in-hand with entering into new territory. Recognition of these pioneering achievements always also applies to the clients, investors and companies that are willing to back new products, concepts, production methods or even sales and economic models.
Most pioneers in the creative disciplines built up their reputation as such afterwards, once their achievements had been viewed in a historical context. This year, the Austrian Design Pioneers exhibition aimed to provide a contemporary overview of the latest innovations and trends from Austria's creative design scene and to represent its thoughts and ideas, setting the stage for the Austrian pioneering achievements of tomorrow. To offer a complete overview of the Austrian design landscape, this year also projects of students from Austrian design universities were presented.
The exhibition was curated and designed by the Viennese studio Vasku & Klug. With the exhibition architecture, they gave a nod to the old monumental museum and sculpture galleries. The structure was clear and transparent and aimed to bring the exhibits under the spotlight and provide an appropriate setting for the exhibition. For the exhibition architecture of last year's Austrian national design exhibition Confession Of Design, Andreas Klug, Michael Vasku and Advantage Austria won the renowned iF Gold Design Award.
Austria can be proud of various internationally successful designers and design companies, including Wittmann, VITEO, Lobmeyr, Silhouette, Wiener Silber Manufactur, Backhausen, Neue Wiener Werkstätte, Team 7 and Zumtobel, to name but a few examples. They work together with their own design teams or collaborate with renowned Austrian designers and artists, such as EOOS, Thomas Feichtner, Martin Mostböck or Erwin Wurm.
Austrian Design Pioneers was organised by Advantage Austria as part of the go-international internationalisation initiative run by Austria's Ministry of Science, Research and Economy and the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber, and was supported by the Austrian furniture industry and the Federal Chancellery.