UFI MAK – Urban Future Initiative

Urban Future Initiative
Center for Art and Architecture @ The Schindler House L.A.
02.08.16 : 02:57 PM

MAK Vienna: Austrian Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art

MAK ViennaThe MAK regards itself as a laboratory of artistic production and a research center of social awareness. The powerful ideas created here today will serve as models for tomorrow. With an extraordinary collection of applied and contemporary art, as well as radical exhibition percepts, the MAK serves a dual purpose as a conservator of significant art objects and as a center for the scientific research of art with a special emphasis on its on-site production, preservation, and reorientation.

MAK ViennaFounded in 1864 as the Imperial and Royal Austrian Museum of Art and Industry, the MAK has pursued a continued commitment to combining practice and theory, art and industry, production and reproduction. The School of Applied Arts, originally an outgrowth of the Museum, was later developed into an independent institution, known today as the University of Applied Arts.

When the Museum was restructured and remodelled by Peter Noever in 1986, the museum’s original purpose was reconfirmed and radically expanded. In close cooperation with important contemporary artists like Donald Judd, Jenny Holzer, Franz Graf, Barbara Bloom, and Heimo Zobernig, Peter Noever succeeded in liberating the museum of its antiquated and historicist garb by confronting it with the contemporary.

Since 2002 Peter Noever has been working on the realization of the project CAT – Contemporary Art Tower in Vienna, developed by designers Noever/Mu¨ller/Embacher, formulating a radical new programmatic strategy which fulfils the complex demands of contemporary artistic production and its reception in several different respects.

One of the two anti-aircraft (flak) towers at Vienna’s Arenbergpark shall be adapted for the purpose of creating an international center of contemporary art.

MAK ViennaThe pioneering idea of CAT is to invite selected international artists to produce, as Artists-in-Residence, art works on site that relate to the specific and historical context of the flak tower and respond to its history and present day state. Both the production and the exhibition of the artworks will be open to the public. What this will lead to is a unique and irremovable 21st Century Art Collection that originates outside the art market.

For more information, please visit MAK Vienna.


Vision: Design

MAK ViennaDesign is a strategy to change our environment. As a central, encompassing and creative category, it works outside existing classifications. It includes architecture, art, science, and many other fields of knowledge and opens up holistic accesses. In design, potentiality and reality combine. It gives shape to utopias. It reflects culture and develops it further. Design pushes the boundaries of a society defined and fixated by specialization and thus is an investment in its future. Design is vision and intervention. Design is thinking.

As a research facility of a new type MAK is the ideal institution for contemporary design research. Its free and flexible structure is mainly defined by outstanding universalists who work on clear perspectives for the future in face of the ever-increasing complexity of social and economic structures. MAK defends the freedom of experimentation. It opens up new spaces and unfolds new perspectives.

MAK is based on the MAK’s material, ideal, and human resources and strengthens the existing international network. The MAK Design Camp is the complementary counterpart of the MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Los Angeles: the MAK Artists and Architects-in- Residence Program and the Urban Future Initiative (UFI) for urbanists and city planners find a second base here with regard to structures and subject matter, situated in Vienna but acting globally.

Cooperating with leadings think-tanks, universities, and research institutions worldwide, MAK develops scenarios for the future, provides impulses for the industry, and tests design innovations for implementability. MAK is a unique research institution that facilitates cross-border projects, addresses crucial issues of our time, and develops today the basis of tomorrow. MAK gives to design what it urgently needs: a laboratory for visions with a wide horizon.

Peter Noever, C.E.O. and Artistic Director MAK

Designing Is Thinking

Design is intervention, is change.
Design raises questions. Design is goal-oriented action. Design sets things in motion.
Design opens new spaces and perspectives.
Design expands our perceptive faculties.
Design is the source of and the grounds for a new reality and its possible imitation.
Design allows us to partake in the archaic. For the first man was a designer! Design is universal.
Each revolution has its own design, each designer is a revolutionary.
Design in space is a culture’s most powerful statement against the void. Design in space is more than just a passive object in space. By establishing a space, design triumphs over the void.
Design is a reflection of culture, is a genuine language of forms.
Design is both principle and process.
Design is always accompanied by a political impulse since it has an impact on the world and on the way it is experienced.
Visions and Utopias may only become real in design!
Design is an engine of reconciliation and connects the possible and the real.
Design is transformation, is a metamorphosis of ideas into forms and figures.
Design is a permanent process of searching, finding, and dismissing solutions.
Design is thinking.

Extract from Peter Noever, Politik und Kunst. Eine Designstragie, Vienna 1980, published in: peter noever. chronisch obsessiv. Die Gegenwart muß erst erkämpft werden. Schriften und Interviews, edited by Gabriel Ramin Schor, Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg, Nuremberg 2008.

Urban Future Initiative Digital Roundtable
August 10-15, 2009
Moderated by: Samuel Assefa, Associate AIA, LEED AP

Subject: Cost Benefits of Mega-events in the Context of Global Competition

Participants: Babak Afrassiabi and Nasrin Tabatabai; Ismail Farouk; Alaa Khaled and Salwa Rashad; Xiangning Li; Hubert Klumpner and Alfredo Brillembourg of Urban Think-Tank

Digital Roundtable 02
October 2009