Exhibition

BENTWOOD AND BEYOND

Thonet and Modern Furniture Design

Wed, 18.12.2019–Sun, 06.09.2020

MAK – Museum of Applied Arts

To commemorate Thonet’s 200th anniversary, the MAK is presenting a major exhibition on modern furniture, in which the signature bentwood furniture of the world famous company is placed in the context of contemporary technological, typological, aesthetic, and historical developments. Thonet’s bentwood chairs are compared with chairs made of tubular steel and plastic as well as with classic office chairs and avant-garde furniture experiments.   
 
In 1842, the German joiner Michael Thonet moved to Vienna to perfect the bentwood furniture he had developed and to found the largest furniture empire of the 19th century. With chair No. 14, produced from 1859, the company not only created one of the world’s best-selling pieces of furniture, but also an undisputed design classic. The exhibition at the MAK shows the central importance of the Thonet company for modern furniture design and, in addition to the company’s history, also tells about the stages in the development of bentwood technology, from artisan production to industrial series production.

The MAK holds one of the world’s most important collections of bentwood furniture, which is supplemented in the exhibition by excellent international loans. The approximately 240 exhibits are each placed in comparison groups, in which several objects face each other. In this way not only material technological steps in the development, but also typological parallels and iconographic affinities become visible.

The typical aesthetics and perfect shape of the Thonet furniture have repeatedly served as a source of inspiration for contemporary artists—for example, the exhibition includes works by Birgit Jürgenssen, Bruno Gironcoli, Ineke Hans, Rolf Sachs, Uta Belina Waeger, and Markus Wilfling, who deal with the bentwood furniture from an artistic perspective. 

Guest Curator: Wolfgang Thillmann
Curator: Sebastian Hackenschmidt, Curator, MAK Furniture and Woodwork Collection

Opening

Tue, 17 Dec 2019
Free admission to the opening
Facebook Event

Publication

The exhibition is accompanied by the catalog BENTWOOD AND BEYOND: Thonet and Modern Furniture Design (MAK Studies 28) by Sebastian Hackenschmidt and Wolfgang Thillmann, edited by Christoph Thun-Hohenstein and Sebastian Hackenschmidt. German/English, ca. 304 pages with numerous color illustrations. MAK, Vienna/Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel 2020. Available at the MAK Design Shop as of mid december and online at MAKdesignshop.at for € 49.95.

SPONSORS



Logo 200 Years of Thonet


Logo Ton


Logo Gebruder Thonet Vienna


For his generous support we would like to thank
Cornelius Grupp


Program (27 Events)

Mon, 01.06.2020 11.00 am
Free Tour on Whit Monday

Insights into the current exhibitions

Insights into the current exhibitions
The tour provides insights into the current exhibitions at the MAK. From 11 a.m.  to 4 p.m. on Whit Monday every hour you have the opportunity to take part in a free guided tour through one of our exhibitions.

REGISTRATION
Limited number of participants (9 persons): registration is absolutely necessary
 
PROTECTIVE MEASURES
The general protective measures for the museum visit also apply during the tour.
Further information here
 
HEADPHONES
If possible, please bring your own headphones for the tour.
 
FEE FOR GUIDED TOUR 
All tours are free on Whit Monday. 
 
MEETING PLACE
MAK Columned Main Hall
1459977553881
Mon, 01.06.2020 1.00 pm
Free Tour on Whit Monday

Exhibition Tour BENTWOOD AND BEYOND

Exhibition Tour BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
The tour provides insights into the current exhibition BENTWOOD AND BEYOND. 

REGISTRATION
Limited number of participants (9 persons): registration is absolutely necessary
 
PROTECTIVE MEASURES
The general protective measures for the museum visit also apply during the tour.
Further information here
 
HEADPHONES
If possible, please bring your own headphones for the tour.
 
FEE FOR GUIDED TOUR 
All tours are free on Whit Monday. 
 
MEETING PLACE
MAK Columned Main Hall
1459977553881
Mon, 01.06.2020 2.00 pm
Free Tour on Whit Monday

Insights into the current exhibitions

Insights into the current exhibitions
The tour provides insights into the current exhibitions at the MAK. From 11 a.m.  to 4 p.m. on Whit Monday every hour you have the opportunity to take part in a free guided tour through one of our exhibitions.

REGISTRATION
Limited number of participants (9 persons): registration is absolutely necessary
 
PROTECTIVE MEASURES
The general protective measures for the museum visit also apply during the tour.
Further information here
 
HEADPHONES
If possible, please bring your own headphones for the tour.
 
FEE FOR GUIDED TOUR 
All tours are free on Whit Monday. 
 
MEETING PLACE
MAK Columned Main Hall
1459977553881
Mon, 01.06.2020 4.00 pm
Free Tour on Whit Monday

Exhibition Tour BENTWOOD AND BEYOND

Exhibition Tour BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
The tour provides insights into the current exhibition BENTWOOD AND BEYOND. 

REGISTRATION
Limited number of participants (9 persons): registration is absolutely necessary
 
PROTECTIVE MEASURES
The general protective measures for the museum visit also apply during the tour.
Further information here
 
HEADPHONES
If possible, please bring your own headphones for the tour.
 
FEE FOR GUIDED TOUR 
All tours are free on Whit Monday. 
 
MEETING PLACE
MAK Columned Main Hall
1459977553881
Tue, 02.06.2020 6.30 pm

Insights into the current exhibitions

Insights into the current exhibitions
The tour provides insights into the current exhibitions at the MAK. 

REGISTRATION
Limited number of participants (9 persons): registration is absolutely necessary
 
PROTECTIVE MEASURES
The general protective measures for the museum visit also apply during the tour.
Further information here
 
HEADPHONES
If possible, please bring your own headphones for the tour.
 
FEE FOR GUIDED TOUR 
€ 3,50
 
MEETING PLACE
MAK Columned Main Hall
1459977553881
+


Media

MAK Exhibition View, 2019
BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
Thonet and Modern Furniture Design
MAK Exhibition Hall
© MAK/Georg Mayer
MAK Exhibition View, 2019
BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
Thonet and Modern Furniture Design
MAK Exhibition Hall
© MAK/Georg Mayer
MAK Exhibition View, 2019
BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
Thonet and Modern Furniture Design
MAK Exhibition Hall
© MAK/Georg Mayer
MAK Exhibition View, 2019
BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
Thonet and Modern Furniture Design
MAK Exhibition Hall
© MAK/Georg Mayer
MAK Exhibition View, 2019
BENTWOOD AND BEYOND
Thonet and Modern Furniture Design
MAK Exhibition Hall
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Gebrüder Thonet, Chair, Model N0. 14, Vienna, 1859 (Execution: 1890–1918)
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Josef Hoffmann, Chair, Model No. 322, for the dining room of the Sanatorium Westend in Purkersdorf, Vienna, 1904
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Josef Hoffmann, Chaise longue, Model No. 670 “Sitting Machine,” Vienna, ca. 1905
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Josef Hoffmann, Armchair, Model No. 729/F, Vienna, ca. 1907
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Hermann Czech, Chair for the MAK restaurant, Vienna, 1993
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Josef Frank, Armchair, Model No. A 403 F, Vienna, ca. 1927
© MAK/Nathan Murrell
Stefan Diez, Chair, Model No. 404, Munich, 2007
© MAK/Georg Mayer
Robert Stadler, Chair, Model No. 107, Vienna, 2011
© MAK/Georg Mayer