Schloss Hollenegg for Design is pleased to announce its ninth annual design exhibition: WOOD LAND. The exhibition focuses on the forest and its most important resource – wood. The show demonstrates various techniques for processing wood and imparts knowledge about different tree species and wood essences. Each object on display also provides an opportunity to discuss topics such as global warming, forest management and sustainable wood production.
In collaboration with Designmonat Graz , WOOD LAND will conquer the historic rooms of the castle in May, with the doors to the exhibition opening on Friday, 3 May with a preview; WOOD LAND will be on display from Saturday, 4 May until Friday, 31 May 2024. The exhibition, curated by founder Alice Stori Liechtenstein, shows works by twenty-one up-and-coming designers in dialogue with three centuries of historical woodwork embedded in the castle’s building fabric.
The exhibition shows the wide variety of objects that can be made from the material: from furniture and lighting to flooring and panelling to the countless practical and decorative objects that can be found in a house – and sometimes only in a castle.
Alongside these everyday objects, unique artworks and conceptual installations will explore the incredible versatility of wood and examine its historical and contemporary uses and manufacturing techniques.
The exhibition continues Liechtenstein’s ongoing exploration of materials as fundamental building blocks of designs and the crucial role they play in sustainability. Wood is one of the most sustainable and environmentally friendly building materials available. At the same time, it is important to consider appropriate forestry practices that preserve the forest in the face of rising temperatures and allow us to harvest timber sustainably.
Last summer’s Design Residency organised in collaboration with Holzcluster Steiermark and Dutch Invertuals, allowed the designers to explore the woodland surrounding the castle and gather knowledge about forest management to then create contextual works that explore the balance between man and nature. Designers in residence Luca Gruber, Alison Malouf, Jakob Niemann, Zoe Jo Rae, Dana Savic, Guillaume Slizewicz and Marte Mei van Haaster will present works inspired by their stay at Schloss Hollenegg in July 2023, in some cases created in collaboration with local carpenters and craftspeople.
Holzcluster Steiermark was instrumental in finding and contacting suitable production partners – carpenters and craftsmen – who supported the designers in residence in the production of their projects. Holzcluster Steiermark has set itself the goal of supporting Styrian companies from the forestry and timber industry in the areas of networking, promotion and development. The Holzcluster is characterised above all by the expertise of its interdisciplinary team and its knowledge of the sector’s issues relating to forestry, industry and trade.
Several designers, such as the designer in residence Jonas Lutz or Lisa Ertel and Janis Zell, have worked with wood that was felled in the surroundings of Hollenegg Castle. Irish designer and creator Joseph Walsh has designed a unique piece of furniture for Hollenegg Castle made from the wood of a hundred-year-old elm tree. The tree in the park at Hollenegg Castle had fallen victim to Dutch elm disease, but its wood was beautiful and perfect for making furniture. It was felled in the summer of 2022 and Joseph took up the challenge of designing a piece of furniture from the wood.
While some designers, such as the Erzgebirge Kollektiv and Michela D’Angelo, have reinterpreted traditional craft techniques with a modern aesthetic, other designers have explored hybrid technologies instead. Lejeuene Kaes Kuhlmann has designed a trousseau that is 3D-printed with wood filaments, and Elisa Strozyk has developed textiles that seamlessly interweave fabric and wood.
During the opening weekend, students from the Manual & Material Culture Bachelor’s degree programme at the New Design University in St. Polten will be presenting a research project that they are carrying out in collaboration with the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna. They are turning wood and colouring it with nanocrystals – structural colours based on cellulose – which can reflect light at a specific wavelength and therefore have an intense, durable and lightfast appearance.
One last special project was developed with Yuniti, a young company that offers a modular furnishing system that can be installed almost anywhere and is customised to the individual needs of the user. For Schloss Hollenegg, Yuniti has furnished an office space in one of the castle’s baroque cupboards. The material used is a 100% recycled surface veneer made from high-quality wood waste from the yacht industry. A special process is used to reassemble different types of wood into a unique and sustainable wood veneer.
Michela D’Angelo – Lisa Ertel & Jannis Zell – Erzgebirge Kollektiv – Luca Gruber – Kaes Kuhlmann Lejeuene – Charlotte Kingsnorth – Serban Ionescu – Jonas Lutz – Alison Malouf – Mimo x Pretziada – Kim Mupangilai – Jakob Niemann – Zoe Jo Rae – Dana Savic – Clemens Schmiedberger – Guillaume Slizewicz – Pernille Snedker-Hansen – Lisa Stolz – Elisa Strozyk – Marte Mei van Haaster – Joseph Walsh – Lukas Wegwerth
EXHIBITION TIMES & GUIDED TOURS
The exhibition is open to the public on Saturdays and Sundays from 11am to 6pm. Guided tours can be booked from Monday to Friday for groups of 5 to 25 people. Individuals can book a guided tour with curator Alice Stori Liechtenstein every Friday at 6 pm. Prices, further information and registration can be found on the website: schlosshollenegg.at
ABOUT THE CURATOR
Alice Stori Liechtenstein is a design curator and exhibition designer. She studied architecture and design in Milan and Barcelona and moved to Austria in 2003, whereupon she founded her design studio in Graz, working in the field of exhibition design. She is a lecturer for the master’s programme Exhibition Design at the FH Joanneum in Graz and writes her design blog AliceinWhateverland.com. She was also curator of Operae 2017, the Turin design fair. Her passion for design and her desire to support design culture and emerging and talented designers led her to start the Schloss Hollenegg for Design project. She lives at Schloss Hollenegg with her husband and children.
ABOUT THE CASTLE
The first mention of Schloss Hollenegg dates back to 1163. The long history of Schloss Hollenegg is visible in its architecture, as subsequent owners helped to shape and change the original medieval building over the centuries. Of particular beauty is the Renaissance courtyard, which is modelled on the Landhaus in Graz and was probably designed by the same architect, Domenico dell’Allio, in the 16th century. The Baroque church in the second courtyard is still used by the parish today. Hollenegg Castle has been owned by the Liechtenstein family since 1821.