Vienna Design Week 2018

12 Things to See And Do At Vienna Design Week 2018

Austria’s leading design event, the Vienna Design Week 2018 is upon us yet again. For the 12th time, the city of Vienna transforms itself into a platform and showcase of creative and experimental processes, reminding us that design is more than just a designed object. From tomorrow, 28th of September to 7th of October you can learn how design shapes our every-day life and our world as consumers through numerous exhibitions, studio visits, lectures, workshops, and tours.

Each year Vienna Design Week chooses to celebrate one district from the city where the festival Headquarters will be placed, this year being the former Sophienspital in the 7th district of Neubau. Furthermore, Poland – a country with an extremely active design scene – is chosen as the guest country and will be highlighted through various exhibitions and events.

With ten continuous days of design and dozens of events taking place, to choose where to go might feel daunting. To give you a head start, we’ve grazed through the massive festival calendar and hand-picked a selected few you might enjoy. In no particular order, here are 12 things to see and do at Vienna Design Week 2018:

vienna design week 2018



28.9.–7.10. , 11am–8pm
Festival Headquarters
Apollogasse 19

As a creative service, product design involves more than just external form. The development and design of objects used every day profoundly affect relationships with our environment and therefore our lifestyle. The exhibition DESIGN EVERYDAY – DESIGN FÜR DEN GEBRAUCH 2018 foregrounds this strategically important theme and shows design’s significance for innovation and the ability of products to compete on the market, using as examples selected works by Austrian designers. All in all, the exhibition represents an open and growing collection – which intends to provide Austrian product designers with a future platform that has an international reach.

vienna design week 2018Image©Jan Lutyk


28.9.–7.10. , 11am–8pm
Festival Headquarters,
Apollogasse 19

The design sector is developing at a rapid pace and undergoing constant change. What role will design play in the 21st century? At present, when design disciplines are crossbreeding to a greater degree than ever, the possibilities and opportunities seem virtually unlimited – from design of the public space to future mobility to the creation of digital applications. And still, everything has one universal objective: making all our lives better. Good designers know how to talk to people, are sharp-eared and act with empathy, and take into account various peoples’ desires and needs. As members of a people-oriented profession, designers see themselves as having a great deal in common with a good doctor. At the Vienna Design Week, visitors will be invited to take part in a special social design diagnostic procedure. The intention is depicting current social problems and identifying tools to solve them.

vienna design week 2018Image©Misha Gurovich

Exist: Digital Design Days 2018 at burggasse 98

1.10 – 6.10.2018
Mo-Fr 15:00-21:00
Sa 12:00-21:30
Burggasse 98

We move at light speed across a digital landscape, take part in a heated protest. Virtual and augmented reality is changing the way we see and sense our world. It’s a great feeling. It’s exciting. It’s new. On a space measuring more than 200 square meters, young Austrian and international designers will meet at Burggasse 98 to look into the future, share visions, and explore the possibilities offered by the new virtual universe. An interactive experience. With talks, guided tours, and an afterparty on 6.10. in Wirr Dual. Facebook event here.

SYMBOL TO LOGO exhibition Polish Institute Wien

Opening: Fr 28. 10.2018, 5 pm
Tu, Thu. 11-19
We, Fr-Su 11-16
Am Gestade 7

A reconstruction and a portion of two Polish exhibitions that dealt with graphic symbols from 1969 to 2015, SYMBOL TO LOGO shine a light on the little-known history of logo design in communist Poland. At the same time, the show recalls forgotten stars of Polish design and their works. It shows how logo design and visual identification have changed since WWII – from hand-drawn graphic symbols to digitally rendered logos, from artistic design marks to emblems of commercial brands, from personal visualization to complex identity. A visual history that reflects both modern Polish history and related social change over the past 70 years.

vienna design week 2018Image©Mateusz Halawa

poster exhibition

28.9.–7.10. , 11am–8pm
Festival Headquarters,
Apollogasse 19

Protest has many different facets and can be expressed in a variety of forms at various occasions. At demonstrations around the world, posters are obviously still the most effective medium. Powerful messages on current and socially relevant themes are compressed on posters, and this graphically reduced form can make expressions of protest memorable. In the runup to the festival, the Vienna Design Week issued an open call to design a protest poster and to engage in a critical and intentionally provocative examination of personal protest themes. Occupying the foreground was the question of what moves creative social critics and critical designers these days. On the festival grounds of the Vienna Design Week, the exhibition STUDIO PROTEST will gather the most expressive subjects and present the winners. As is well known, Poland has a long tradition of (political) poster design, and as the guest country of Vienna Design Week 2018, a curated thematic focus featuring Polish protest posters will join the poster exhibition.

vienna design week 2018Image©Heysister!


28.9. 10.30am–6.30pm
29.9. 10am–6pm
1.10.–5.10. 10.30am–6.30pm
6.10. 10am–6pm
Raumkomplett, Theobaldgasse 20

A concept store is transformed into a packaging laboratory. For one evening, the recently formed design team HEYSISTER! will turn the raumkomplett store into a packaging and bag boutique. Festival visitors are invited to this event to fold precut box elements for their own carton bag and to experience the playful interaction of smart packaging constructions and ideally tailored graphic design. For the duration of the festival, the concept store will tell us about sustainable, social, and regional home design and also about new products made by designers in Vienna and Berlin (AA-Collected), offering the festival audience discounts on local products.


28.9.–29.9. , 11am–6pm
1.10.–6.10. , 11am–6pm
WOP Works on Paper
Burggasse 69/2

The Russian artist and illustrator Sveta Shuvaeva works in mediums such as drawing, painting, collage, and installation. The DRAW-S exhibition presents selected works on paper in addition to an abstract cartoon, a collage of drawings made over the past six years. These drawings are fragments of abandoned or unfinished works that have been recycled. Trained as an architect, Shuvaeva’s works examine the ornaments of modern visual culture. They provide useful optical directions for everyday life and reinterpret them. In her visual readymades, Shuvaeva removes meaning from her images, combining functionality and decoration.

vienna design week 2018Image©Peter Diamond

GO WEST! American Illustration Exhibition at the designforumWIEN

Open till 7.10.2018
Mo-Fr 10-18, Sa-Su 11-18
MQ, Museumsplatz 1

Young illustrators from across the globe continue to flock to cities like New York and Los Angeles to make their mark on the thriving and lucrative American market. GO WEST! showcases a selection of the very best illustrators working in the USA – from young talent on the rise to established veterans, each one displaying their own unique vision. Each artist will display at least two works, and where possible commercially commissioned works will be paired with independently created works. GO WEST! shows the richness, vitality, and individualism of American illustration. American culture is of enduring interest in Europe, and we feel that in the field of illustration it has something particularly special to offer.

vienna design week 2018Image©Kollektiv Fischka


5.10.2018, 3 pm
Starts at Festival Headquarters,
Apollogasse 19

Vienna’s 7th district Neubau is a designed universe in the best sense of the term, and exploring a cross section of it is the declared goal of this tour with Marion Kuzmany. This walk through the 7th district will have an interactive and sociable completion with real-life cocktails and virtual presentations by the multimedia and architecture office Virtual DynamiX on Kirchengasse. Sign up here.

vienna design week 2018Image©Maciej Blazniak


28.9.–7.10. , 11am–8pm
Festival Headquarters,
Apollogasse 19

The exhibition THE ABC’S OF POLISH DESIGN shows the best of Polish design – from furniture, glass, and porcelain to written texts, logos, children’s toys, sports equipment, and even candy. Contemporary designs will be on display alongside classics, one-of-a-kind objects and artworks, prototypes, and fondly remembered everyday articles from the past century. As a commentary on these design icons, the exhibition will also include visual interpretations of 25 selected contemporary Polish illustrators and graphic designers.

Virtual reality experience: AN EAGLE-EYE VIEW OF VIENNA

28.9.–7.10. , 11am–8pm
Festival Headquarters,
Apollogasse 19

Discover Vienna from the air! An immersive experience through physical and virtual reality will be offered by the Vienna Tourist Board as part of the Virtual Reality special format at this year’s Vienna Design Week. Thanks to VR glasses, visitors will have a spectacular look at the city in a 360° eagle-eye view. Together with the production company Red Bull Media House, the Board sent up eagles that filmed the city from above. This view represents a world premiere: Never before have eagles been used with 360° cameras above a large city.

OFFF Vienna X Vienna Design Week 2018 After Party

6.10.2018,  9 pm

The official Vienna Design Week 2018 afterparty! Be there or be square.
Facebook event here.

To find more events, visit the official Vienna Design Week 2018 website and events calendar here.

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