ATMOISM – Designed Atmospheres


With “ATMOISM – Designed Atmospheres – Hermann August Weizenegger” the Kunstgewerbemuseum (Museum of Applied Arts) is dedicating a major solo exhibition to the renowned designer Hermann August Weizenegger (HAW). For this purpose he developed the design door CURTAIN together with the Heilbronn door manufacturer ComTür.

Link to the exhibition

Design study CURTAIN 01

Design study CURTAIN 02

Interview Hermann X-Chairs

Raising the curtain for doors

When it comes to room design, HAW believes that doors are often an afterthought. “We don’t see doors.” But, actually, doors define the first and last impression we have of a room, and they help shape the atmosphere inside the room. HAW sees doors as a “hybrid of furniture and architecture” – as an initially static part of the wall, they divide up room perception and only gain utility through their mobility. With Curtain, HAW is demonstrating the performance capability of doors as contemporary furniture in integrated room design.

The designer says of himself that he has an inclination toward total art. He already put these ideals into practice in 2010 in the Hotel Dresden exhibition, for which he planned a fictitious art nouveau hotel as a synthesis of total art – from the façade to the furniture and even to the shoes, glasses, and jewelry. Following on from this idea, architecture has the same significance in HAW’s designs as the doors that form part of it. This universal approach to design is reminiscent of Josef Hoffmann and the Wiener Werkstätte (Vienna Workshop). Here, designers from wide-ranging disciplines pursued the goal of penetrating every area of daily life with art and handicraft.

As the name of the design already indicates, HAW modeled his idea on a curtain, with the flowing, dynamic fall of the folds abstracted here into solid form. The surface was modeled with a structure combining raised and recessed areas to mimic the shadows cast by the undulating form of the curtain. The elegance of movement stands in contrast to the flat wall. The apparently infinitely extending wave form adds movement to the surroundings and is only limited by the plain design of the door frame. The wood surface is modeled with a velvety finish in an unexpected color – blood red – that transforms the room atmosphere.

The production of Curtain demanded the ultimate in skilled precision work. This is why HAW opted for ComTür, a construction carpentry shop and cabinet maker located in Heilbronn/Germany. Since the company’s foundation in 1919, the family business has taken a deliberate stand against mass production in favor of high-quality, durable one of a kind products – an aspect that is also especially important to HAW for his designs. The symbiosis of tried-and-tested handicraft and modern manufacturing technology that are brought together in the door design was only possible thanks to the know-how of the craftsmen and women from ComTür.


Exhibition content

With “ATMOISM – Designed Atmospheres – Hermann August Weizenegger” the Berlin Kunstgewerbemuseum (Museum of Applied Arts) is dedicating a major solo exhibition to the renowned designer Hermann August Weizenegger (HAW). As part of this exhibition, the new HERMANN X-CHAIR from OUT is being launched.

Around 20 stage-like interventions are on show, each of which has been designed especially for this exhibition. In a dialog with the overall permanent exhibition, they also open up potential rooms to show how future exhibits might be created and contextualized and how atmospheric tours and experience worlds could be created for visitors to the museum.

The exhibition is due to open in the autumn of 2020.

Further information

Wandkeramik: „Silk Stone-Black Chiffon" von porcelaingres 

Fotos: Felix Löchner I Bernd Hiepe