Since its inception, the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK has brought international designers together with Viennese craft businesses as part of the Passionswege format. The dialogues take place away from the commercial constraints of usual working relationships and allow the curated tandems of craftsmen and designers to pursue the passion in their work: they experiment, exchange knowledge - and together create unexpected solutions that are at the place of their creation , the authentic Viennese workshops and shops. In this way, the Passionswege contribute to keeping handicrafts alive in the city beyond purely museum preservation.

The international initiative co/rizom is active in a similar way: through the targeted use of design and a bundle of appropriate tools, it supports craftsmen in opening up new sales markets. While the Passionswege remain a free format with no commercial orientation, the cooperation with co/rizom enables the project partners to continue working together in the development and distribution framework of the platform.

This year, the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK commissioned two collaborations as part of the Passionswege: on the one hand Célia Picard and Hannes Schreckensberger with Hutmode Biester and on the other hand Studio Johanna Seelemann with Andrei Florin Varga / Pyrarium. Both teams are already working intensively on their joint projects. We visited the workshops (photos below) to give you a little insight. The results can be admired in the usual way at the festival.

Curated by Gabriel Roland (VIENNA DESIGN WEEK), supported by Alina Serban (co/rizom co-founder)


Célia Picard and Hannes Schreckensberger with hat fashion beasts

Straw braid as a starting point: This basic material for the production of traditional straw hats appears modest, but is technically complex and theoretically infinitely long. The border is also one of milliner Eva Siebert's favorite materials - and when Célia Picard and Hannes Schreckensberger came from France to their small workshop right next to the Karmelitermarkt at the invitation of the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK, it quickly became the basis for joint Passionswege experiments.

In dialogue, the hat maker and designer went back to the origins of this linear natural material. The result, entitled GRANDE PAILLE, makes a little thing big, raw material to final form. The spatial elements and large-format wall hangings of the installation, made of interlaced, striped ribbons sewn together, seem far removed from the rural-Mediterranean straw hat and yet are close to the traditional use. The objects remain namely light, mobile and nomadic - like a hat.


Studio Johanna Seelemann with Andrei Florin Varga / Pyrarium

At the beginning of being human there is fire. The ability to harness its elemental power brought with it an unprecedented succession of innovations, from food preparation to ceramics and metallurgy to the emerging technologies of the present. As much as fire has been pushed out of our day-to-day lives and as much as it may be mediated by modern household appliances, it is still fundamental to our way of life.

Considerations like these formed the basis of the dialogue initiated by the VIENNA DESIGN WEEK between the German designer Johanna Seelemann and the Viennese inventor and stove builder Andrei Florin Varga. Their joint project A+++ refers to the highest level of the EU energy efficiency scale for household appliances. It challenges our current view of fire as inefficient and destructive. In contrast, Seelemann and Varga pose the rediscovery of a versatile domestic technology. The work of the two translates essential but often lost knowledge about handling fire into the present day - and thus nourishes a flame with a promising future.

With the kind support of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Vienna.