If Dogs Run Free

ViennaEating Out

If Dogs Run Free

Designers slip the leash at theatrical bar...

If Dogs Run Free… There are probably a lot of off-colour ways you can finish that sentence for yourselves. If you green-light a new bar and let the designers run free, this is what your ceiling looks like: a crazy landscape of coloured polygons that recalls the choose-your-own-future game of your school days, constructed by a gaggle of girls by elaborately folding paper to kill time in third period geography.

Gregorio S. Lubroth and Chieh-shu Tzou of Tzou Lubroth Architekten slipped the leash at this new Viennese watering bowl – in fact the pair are part owners along with a graphic designer, a restaurateur and an actress, so there was never likely to be a shortage of creativity at If Dogs Run Free (which, we assume, is named after the Dylan song of the same name). Conceived along the lines of a theatre, the space uses the ceiling as the stage, with the floor and walls much more down-to-earth in colour and style.

Although these parts feature blanket palettes of muted grey and earthy brown, there is a richness there that ensures it never feels a sterile promontory, and these blank canvasses will be used to showcase artworks in the future. Put yourselves in the action at this scene-stealing set on Gumpendorfer Strasse in the city’s 6th District.

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Photography, Stefan Zenzmaier