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Paper installation in Kiscelli Museum for the Design week Budapest 2015

We created fantasy paper installations inspired by old furniture from the collection of the museum. Karcsi Papershop was our partner in this work which was exhibited in the old church space which belongs to the museum.
Detailed information about the installations see below the gallery.
Photo: Réka Kövesdi, Kriszti Nádasi

Furniture 1. – Armchair
Maple tree with painted decoration; a painted medallion on its backrest, seat cushion upholstered. Copy of an 18th century classicist English furniture. Made in the Budapest firm of Max Schmidt, 1904.
The installation – “A Female Torso”
We were inspired by the portrait of the unknown woman on the chair’s backrest. Having become qurious about the personality hiding behind this beautiful though unhappy face we invoked her in our installation with her dress left on a chair, the textile to become frayed by time the same way as her identity has already fallen into oblivion.

Furniture 2. – Couch
Carved, originally gilt but now bronzed surface, gobelin embroidery cover on its backrest and seat. Copy of a Louis XVI couch. Made in the Vienna factory of Friedrich Otto Schmidt, 1902.
The installation – “War of Roses”
Rampant romanticism of the 18th century is manifested on this couch. Its backrest is decorated with an adorable gobelin rosary encouraging us not to accept decorativity l’art pour l’art. And since gobelin is an embroidery technique imitating waving, this time we prepared a paper embroidery variation.

Furniture 3. – Low back chair
Oakwood, dark dye, its backrest covered with oakwood veneer and decorated with an engraving, coloured varnishing on top. Designer: Béla Lajta. Made for the Institute of the Blind (now Kinetic Therapy Institute, 60 Mexikói Street, 14th district), 1908.
The installation – “Tactile”
Since this chair was used by blind people, its designer created a recessed decoration for the chair’s sideboard to make decorative art tangible. Our main concern here was how to amalgamate Lajta’s beautiful Art Nouveau motives with the pleasure of tangible art.

Furniture 4. – Writing-desk
Oakwood cover, writing slide with leather covered surface, turned drawer pulls, its superstructure decorated with carved balustrade; brass mounting. Once owned by Adam Clark, c. 1855.
The installation – “The Constructor”
Looking at the writing-desk of the well-to-do building contractor and engineer Adam Clark we remembered the many edifices and constructions he had helped to be realized. We pay our tribute to him by a solid, self-sustaining and structured installation.

Furniture 5. – Art Nouveau wash-stand
Wrought-iron stand with copper water container and washbasin. Made in the Budapest workshop of Gyula Jungfer, c. 1880.
The installation – “Hommage à Jules Jungfer”
This wash-stand is decorated with a bundle of wrought-iron scrolls, leaves and flowers. Gyula (Jules) Jungfer elevated Hungarian decorative smithcraft to the quality of art earning recognition of the highest level receiving silver medal at the Paris World Fair and gold medal at the Millennium Exhibition (Budapest). He created the naturalist wrought-iron style using plant motives. He worked in collaboration with the most famous architects of his time, and his works can still be admired in Budapest. We translated his wrought-iron wreaths into paper installation.

Furniture 6. – Two door wardrobe
Originally this was an oakwood furniture dyed Mahogany colour with applied ornaments of copper. A reduced copy of the workshop cupboard made in 1898 by Melchior Lechter (1865–1937) painter and craftsman. Executed either in the Vienna factory of Friedrich Otto Schmidt or in the Budapest firm of Max Schmidt, c. 1900.
The installation – “Ars Poetica”
On the top of the wardrobe there is a quotation from Nietzsche’s Zarathustra: «Trachte ich nach Glücke? Ich trachte nach meinem Werke!» meaning: “I have long ceased to strive any more for happiness, I strive for my work.” We considered this idea suitable to be the motto of the whole exhibition that is why our installation is centered on these words.

Furniture 7.– Empire style display cabinet
Pinewood base covered with pear-wood, turned columns with carved and gilt capitals, dyed black, polished with blackened varnish. Made for Joseph Reymeier, a master fisherman of Buda in the firm of Sebestyén Antal Vogel, 1829.
The installation – “The Fisherman’s Vivarium”
Joseph Reymeier was one of the well-to-do fishermen in the Víziváros district of Buda. His wealth is obviously represented by this expensive cabinet having manufactured as a trousseau for his daughter. It is a glittering glass cube which we filled with goldfish as a burst of pepper to its one-time owner.

Furniture 8. – Refectory sideboard
Oakwood with carved column capitals and brass mountings. It came from the convent of the Order of the Sisters of St. Elisabeth (OSE) at Battyány Square. Made in the 1760s.
The installation – “Sideboard of the Nuns”
This sideboard once stood in the refectory of the OSE convent. These nuns cared for the ill and elderly offering their benign love and herbs. Their order was named after Saint Elisabeth of Hungary who often distributed food among the poor. One occasion while secretly carrying loaves of bread in her apron she was halted by her brother-in-law, Henrik. He asked what she was hiding in her apron. Elisabeth being afraid to be banned from charitable deeds she lied that she carried roses. When she showed Henrik the content of her apron breads miraculously turned into roses – God did not want her to get caught in a lie. This is why herbs and roses pour out from the sideboard of the nuns here.

Furniture 9. – School desk
Painted cast-iron structure and beech tree. Once it was owned by Margit Hüttl, daughter of porcelain manufacturer Tivadar Hüttl. Made in the school and office furniture factory owned by Lipót Feivel & Heirs in Budapest, 1913.
The installation – “Word Cloud”
We can imagine Margit, the little girl educated at home, sitting over her book in her desk all afternoon. Evening approaches, and all the learning is getting merged into one another in her head.

Furniture 10. – Bed
Pinewood base covered with oakwood, with carved and turned ornaments, polished. Once it was owned by István Frecskay, a burger of Pest, father-in-law of painter Mihály Szemlér. Made by carpenter Zsigmond Fremberg in Pest, 1836.
The installation – “The Painter’s Dream”
The painter received this bed from his father-in-law as a gift. Szemlér was the first Hungarian master or rather the initiator of genre painting depicting folk people. His rainbow coloured dream is suspended over his bed like an openwork or lace-work baldachin.


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