Rugs on the floor, certainly. Rugs on the walls, occasionally. But a sculptural rug standing horizontally in the middle of a room? That isn’t something one sees every day, although it is much easier to look at without putting a crick in one’s neck. The rug in question, from high-end Italian specialists Nodus, forms part of an installation in the Blue Salon, one of the rooms of the MAK Museum’s Geymüllerschlössel branch on the outskirts of Vienna. The opulent 1808 building is currently hosting seven interventions by Studio Formafantasma – Italian duo Simone Farresin and Andrea Tremarchi – which are being exhibited collectively as The Stranger Within.
The rug isn’t the only unusual introduction to the museum. Formafantasma’s contemporary design and loaned objects both contrast with and complement the Geymüllerschlössel, which was built as a banker’s summer retreat – and is renowned as a shining example of original Beidermeier decorative art. Something with a name like the Bladder Chandelier shouldn’t be at home in a place like this, but the opalescent quality of the lampshades fit right in among the native marble and ivory. The Stranger Within is available to view on Saturdays and Sundays between 11am and 6pm until 1 December, plus an extra afternoon this Friday, 4 October, for Vienna Design Week.