Anyone who’s ever wondered where to put a new pot plant knows that interior design is a rich tapestry for personal expression, influenced by all sorts of needs and constraints.
The Home Stories exhibition at the Vienna Furniture Museum explores the recent history of private living spaces and how we might draw on it for the future…
- A chronological look at significant moments in the evolution of interior design across the last 100 years
- Features such names as Loos and Warhol, among many others
- Runs Oct 20, 2021 to May 29, 2022
- Exhibition comes to Vienna from the Vitra Design Museum
- See also:
- Furniture Museum visitor & ticket tips
- Current design exhibitions in Vienna
100 years, 20 visionary interiors
(Exhibition view; press photo © Schloß Schönbrunn Kultur- und Betriebsges.m.b.H / Edgar Knaack)
The last year or so has seen us pull in our heads like startled tortoises and retreat to the sanctity of our private living spaces.
Increased time at home has perhaps forced us to consider some of the issues that have coloured such spaces since humans first put down their furs in a delightful one-bedroom stone dwelling with a view across the mountainside.
Our living spaces form a battleground between competing needs. Economy and functionality versus self-expression and personal taste, for example. Interior design as a juggling act, where the balls constantly change.
Then consider all the technological, cultural and socioeconomic factors that have impacted interior design even in just the last century or so. For example, the rise of the household appliance, changing living standards, the growing premium placed on urban space, fashion and design trends, and architectural innovations.
This dynamic environment forms the basis of the Home Stories exhibition that debuted at Germany’s Vitra Design Museum back in 2020 and now reaches Vienna.
At its heart, Home Stories takes us on a journey through a century of interior design, highlighting the trends and critical developments that had significant impacts on the way we shape our living spaces and choose to live at home.
The exhibition presents a kaleidoscope of innovations that begins in the early 20th-century with the rise of modernist thinking. This was the era of social housing, for example…of particular relevance to Vienna with its famous interwar public housing projects.
The chronology ends in the 21st century by touching on such issues as micro-housing design, flexible space optimisation, or the impact of the sharing economy.
Home Stories includes 20 interiors that often feature the work of resonant names in the history of architecture, art and design: Loos, Warhol, Beaton and de Wolfe, for example.
Some interiors illustrate trends, while others buck or predate them. They encourage us to ask how we really want to live and show how interior design stands under the influence of various other disciplines: from product design to the fine arts.
The displays also demonstrate how some of today’s challenges are really nothing new.
In the 1920s, for example, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe was already designing open-space interiors, but making clever use of textiles and furnishings to maintain activity-specific areas within.
Perhaps you may find some inspiration for your next trip to IKEA?
Tickets and dates
Travel through a timeline of domestic interior design from October 20th, 2021 to May 29th, 2022. An entrance ticket to the museum gets you into the exhibition, too (or use an appropriate sightseeing pass).
For more furniture joy, you have the wider permanent exhibition at the museum, but also the MAK museum: an institution entirely dedicated to design and the applied arts.
How to get to Home Stories
Follow the tips and directions given on the Furniture Museum main page. Though not right in the centre, the museum sits just off Vienna’s main shopping street with two U3 subway stations nearby (Neubaugasse and Zieglergasse).
Address: Andreasgasse 7, 1070 Vienna