Virtual Design Festival

Tour of design exhibition at historic Austrian castle with curator Alice Stori Liechtenstein as part of VDF

Today VDF teams up with Schloss Hollenegg for a tour of the historic castle in Austria and live interview with curator Alice Stori Liechtenstein.

Stori Liechtenstein spoke live to Dezeen's founder and editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs, as well as sharing a specially recorded tour of Schloss Hollenegg.

The castle, which dates back to 1163, is home to Schloss Hollenegg for Design, a cultural programme established by Stori Liechtenstein in 2015.

Schloss Hollenegg in Austria is home to cultural programme Schloss Hollenegg for Design
Schloss Hollenegg in Austria is home to cultural programme Schloss Hollenegg for Design

Last week saw the opening of Walden, an exhibition exploring our relationship with the wilder side of the natural world, which features works by 22 designers.

On the tour, you can watch above as well as on Dezeen's Facebook page, Stori Liechtenstein discusses the pieces, which are dotted around the castle and its grounds, and recounts the history of her home.

Walden by Schloss Hollenegg for VDF
The Walden exhibition explores our relationship with nature

"Many of the projects in the exhibition are about self-sufficiency and about finding a new approach to doing, making, living," said Stori Liechtenstein, who commissioned many of the works for the Walden exhibition.

"It is the time to bring nature back in our everyday life; not the romanticised, sanitised, domesticated version of it, but the gritty, wild stuff. The current narrative around the environmental crisis offers conflicting and confusing information, it has been wrongly politicised, and often induces guilt without offering solutions."

"This makes accepting that our lifestyles need to be dramatically transformed, a painful process: we procrastinate, waiting for a miracle cure," she added.

Schloss Hollenegg is the seat of the Liechtenstein family
Schloss Hollenegg is the seat of the Liechtenstein family

"In order to find the solution, perhaps, we need first to stop seeing our environment for our use, to be tamed into a garden. We need to embrace the undomesticated, feral side of nature and allow pockets of wilderness to take over, in order to live with the simplicity of the philosopher," Liechtenstein said.

Pieces from the show are available for purchase via digital design gallery Adorno.

Located in Austria's Styria province, Schloss Hollenegg is the seat of the Liechtenstein family. It features elements of multiple architectural styles that have been added to the original medieval building over three years.

The fortified palace has a Renaissance courtyard modelled on the Landhaus palace in nearby Graz and a Baroque church.

Schloss Hollenegg
Murals in the Schloss Hollenegg

Usually closed to the public, the castle opens once a year to the public for its annual design show. This year's public opening has been cancelled due to coronavirus, but the exhibition has been mounted and will be brought to life via the live tour and an accompanying video.

Participants in the Walden exhibition are Crafting Plastics, Charlap Hyman & Herrero, Calico Wallpaper, Marlène Huissoud, cc-tapis, Klemens Schillinger, Sophie Dries, Kaia, Arvid & Marie, Thomas Ballouhey, Thomas Barger, BNAG, Commonplace, Marianne Drews, Jonas Edvard, Destroyers/Builders, Marc Leschelier, mischer’traxler, Odd Matter, Marylou Petot, Studio B Severin, Study O Portable, Studiotut, Evalie Wagner and Sander Wassink.

About Virtual Design Festival

Virtual Design Festival, the world's first digital design festival, runs from 15 April to 30 June 2020. It is a platform that will bring the architecture and design world together to celebrate the culture and commerce of our industry, and explore how it can adapt and respond to extraordinary circumstances.

VDF will host a rolling programme of online talks, lectures, movies, product launches and more, complementing and supporting fairs and festivals around the world that have had to be postponed or cancelled and it will provide a platform for design businesses, so they can, in turn, support their supply chains.