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The MAK Permanent Collection

The MAK’s renovation in 1986 went hand in hand with the development of new strategies for presenting the museum’s extensive collection. The project of redoing the permanent collection made it possible to present preservation-worthy items in an incomparable and exemplary interplay between artistic heritage and contemporary interventions by artists including Barbara Bloom, eichinger oder knechtl, Günther Förg, Gangart, Franz Graf, Jenny Holzer, Donald Judd, Peter Noever, Manfred Wakolbinger, and Heimo Zobernig.


The various spaces of the Permanent Collection were organized in a chronological fashion, with the individual collection items arranged to produce congenial ensembles of outstanding works rather than a dense, serial presentation. The participating artists, whose interventions were developed via a process of intense collaboration with the MAK’s respective collection heads, arrived at highly diverse approaches and solutions.

With the directorship of Christoph Thun-Hohenstein, the Permanent Collection is to embark on a process of continual change, building on the established concept of contemporary transformation by artists working in the present. As a first step, the Wiener Werkstätte, Art Nouveau Art Deco and 20th/21st Century Architecture sections were closed in mid-July 2012; these reopened on 18 September 2013 as a permanent presentation of VIENNA 1900. Design / Arts and Crafts 1890–1938. After the reinstallation the Permanent Collection ASIA. China - Japan - Korea opened on 19 February 2014 and the Permanent Collection Carpets on 9 April 2014.

In contrast to the previous approach, these spaces will be reconceived as a dynamic display collection in which each periodic re-design of individual areas is to be accompanied by rotation of the objects on exhibit.

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Permanent Collection Carpets

Artistic intervention: Füsun Onur
The MAK Carpet Collection is one of the most famous in the world. These unique pieces from the 16th and 17th centuries feature an incomparable variety of patterns and colors, materials, and techniques.
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Permanent Collection Renaissance Baroque Rococo

Artistic intervention: Franz Graf
The joint arrangement of precious glasses with valuable needle and bobbin lace in the MAK Renaissance Baroque Rococo Collection on permanent display not only complies with aspects of art history, but also places these delicate materials in a visual-sensuous dialogue with each other that enhances and accentuates their aesthetic effect with striking clarity.
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Permanent Collection Vienna 1900

Design/Arts and Crafts 1890–1938
This presentation’s thematic core is the multifarious struggle to arrive at an Austrian, modern, bourgeois, and democratic style. Today, this chapter of design and arts and crafts history—subsumed under the terms of Secessionism and Jugendstil—serves like no other to underpin Austrian identity.
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Permanent Collection ASIA

China – Japan – Korea
The Asia Collection of the MAK is one of the important collections in Europe of art and applied arts from the Asian region. It has been compiled from public and private collections during a history lasting 150 years and offers a wide-ranging view of the art history of Asia.
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Permanent Collection Historicism Art Nouveau

Artistic intervention: Barbara Bloom
The Historicism and Art Nouveau Collection on permanent display includes an overview of a hundred years of Thonet furniture production. These and other timeless items of bent wood furniture manifest a creative approach that ingeniously exploits the properties of the material and points to new ways ahead for seating furniture.
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Permanent Collection Baroque Rococo Classicism

Artistic intervention: Donald Judd
With a unique artistic intervention Donald Judd managed to blend the different stylistic worlds of the Baroque, Rococo, Classicism and Minimalism. Taking on a central position here is the Porcelain Chamber from the Palais Dubsky in Brno, one of the first rooms ever designed in European porcelain.
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Works on Paper Room

Curator: Kathrin Pokorny-Nagel
The Works on Paper Room is devoted exclusively to graphic art. This space features a multifunctional system of tracks holding mobile frames that can be converted to display cases as needed. Thematically, the material presented here encompasses commercial graphic art in the broadest sense. The diversity of the exhibition programming, which covers a range of topics including posters, hand drawings, Japanese woodcuts, individual artists’ stances, artists’ books and architectural projects, testifies to the underlying collection’s multilayered character.
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Permanent Collection Empire Style Biedermeier

Artistic intervention: Jenny Holzer
Besides brilliant achievements in the arts and crafts production in Austria in the nineteenth century, the Empire and Biedermeier Collection on permanent display shows the creative and material versatility of an epoch marked by cultural, social and economic upheavals in the wake of the industrial revolution.
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Halls of the Permanent Collection 1993-2012/2013

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Wiener Werkstätte

Permanent Collection / Designing artist: Heimo Zobernig
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Permanent Collection 20th/21st Century Architecture

Designing artist: Manfred Wakolbinger
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Permanent Collection Orient

Artistic internvention: GANGART
The MAK Orient Collection on permanent display includes a display of precious knotted carpets. The most valuable pieces originally came from the Austrian Imperial House, while the remaining holdings came from the Oriental Museum or were purchased for the Museum für Kunst und Industrie (Museum of Art and Industry).
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Permanent Collection Contemporary Art

Designing artist: Peter Noever
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Permanent Collection Asia

Design: Peter Noever
Making centuries of cultural transfer between Asia and Europe traceable through a line-up of exemplary exhibits from the MAK collection is the goal that informs the reinstallation of the MAK Permanent Collection Asia.
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Permanent Collection Art Nouveau Art Deco

Designing artists: Eichinger oder Knechtl
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Permanent Collection Romanesque Gothic Renaissance

Artistic intervention: Günther Förg
The MAK Romanesque Gothic Renaissance Collection on permanent display reflects the often long-term survival of stylistic characteristics in the decorative arts. A special highlight here is the most ancient set of medieval liturgical vestments to have been preserved in its entirety.
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The MAK Study Collection (1993-2013)


With the MAK’s renovation in 1986 and the associated development of new strategies for presenting the museum’s holdings, the MAK Permanent Collection—conceived to present the museum’s collection highlights in interplay with artistic interventions—was joined by the MAK Study Collection.

In the Study Collection, the MAK showed a small cross-section of its extensive holdings according to a material and technology-specific form of organization to which the respective collection curators’ specializations correspond. In this area of the museum, the items on exhibit were also embedded within their typological, historical and/or functional contexts.

With the directorship of Christoph Thun-Hohenstein, the Study Collection was developed further into a new kind of place for informal learning, with the numerous objects—placed on display either individually or in groups at regular periodic intervals within the context of new exhibiting formats—amounting to an overall presentation that is innovative in terms of both content and design. With the opening of the MAK DESIGN LAB on 12 May 2014, the museum has undertaken a radical new positioning of the former MAK Study Collection, and the design concept of the LAB has been consciously chosen as a contrast to the MAK Permanent Collection.

Rooms of the Study Collection Collection 1993-2013

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Textiles Study Collection

Curator: Barbara Karl
Since 1993, the Textiles Study Collection has been mounting temporary exhibitions showing various parts of the collection in order to present the wide diversity of the MAK’s textile holdings.
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Metal Study Collection

Curator: Elisabeth Schmuttermeier
Visitors can realise just how diverse the Metal Collection is by viewing the presentation of the objects in the Study Collection Metal, which is arranged according to types. Candleholders, beakers, pots and jugs, bowls and dishes illustrate their stages of stylistic and functional development. Moreover, since 1993 the great variety of the metal collection has been presented in the form of alternating, temporary exhibitions, which also frequently include contemporary jewellery design.
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The Frankfurt Kitchen

Curator: Sebastian Hackenschmidt
Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky’s compact design for the Frankfurt Kitchen, the archetype of the modern kitchen, is impressive above all for its rational simplicity and streamlining of work processes. An exact reproduction of the seminal Frankfurt Kitchen of 1926 produced in collaboration with the famous architect is on permanent display in the Study Collection.
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Ceramics Study Collection

Curator: Rainald Franz, curator, Glass and Ceramics Collection
The main focus of the Study Collection Ceramics comprises objects of Viennese porcelain manufacturing (1718–1864). Furthermore, artist’s ceramics of the Viennese Art Nouveau as well as ceramic works from Vienna and the former Crown Lands invite visitors to explore the diversity of the MAK Ceramics Collection.
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Study Collection Seating Furniture

Curator: Sebastian Hackenschmidt
This display draws on the MAK’s extensive Furniture Collection to present a diverse typology of seating furniture. As a both visually appealing and didactic compilation covering numerous eras and styles, it also serves to shed light on the constantly changing, socially coded ways in which human beings deal with objects.
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Glass Study Collection

Curator: Rainald Franz, curator, Glass and Ceramics Collection
The Glass Study Collection shows the multiplicity of forms and diversity of colors to be found in glass objects. Changing exhibitions offer an overview of significant phases of the history of European glass production.
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Related

Publications

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Publication

MAK/Guide ASIA

China – Japan – Korea
MAK/Guide ASIA. China – Japan – Korea published on the occasion of the reinstallation of the MAK Permanent Collection Asia (19.2.2014). German/English, 200 pages, appr. 100 color illustrations, 24 x 12,5 cm, paperback, Vienna / Munich–London–New York: MAK / Prestel Verlag, 2014
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Publications

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Publication

GOTTFRIED SEMPER. The Ideal Museum

Practical Art in Metals and Hard Materials
MAK Studies 8
English
288 pages, 50 illustrations, 18 full colored illustrations
34,5 x 21,5 cm, hardbound
MAK, Vienna / Schlebrügge.Editor Vienna 2007
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Publications

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Publication

20/21

MAK Collection of Contemporary Art
MAK Studies 15
German/English
244 Pages, numerous colored illustrations
20 x 32 cm
2008 MAK Vienna / Verlag für Moderne Kunst, Nürnberg
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Publications

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Publication

MAK/Guide CARPETS

MAK/Guide CARPETS published on the occasion of the reinstallation of the MAK Permanent Collection Carpets. German/English, 192 pages, appr. 100 color illustrations, 24 x 12,5 cm, paperback, Vienna / Munich–London–New York: MAK / Prestel Verlag, 2014
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Random

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Library and Works on Paper Collection

Head: Kathrin Pokorny-Nagel
The MAK Library and Works on Paper Collection is one of the largest and oldest museum libraries with a focus on applied art. Alongside classic library functions, the collection is also devoted to artistic aspects of the pictorial in all possible variants as well as to the initiation of a reappraisal of art production manifested in paper form.
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MAK Design Summit

Video Documentation
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Traces -

Archtecture and Museum Route Austria–Czech Republic
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Jaguar at the MAK

Mon, 19.05.2014
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