On the trail of Wiener Werkstätte designs
Koloman Moser and Josef Hoffmann founded the Wiener Werkstätte in 1903 together with the industrialist Fritz Waerndorfer. The designs and products of this era have since become timeless classics that are still found wherever one goes in Vienna. Because some of the companies that Moser and Hoffmann designed for still exist to this day.
Woka Lamps Vienna produces exclusive lighting based on contemporary Wiener Werkstätte and Jugendstil designs. Many of the high-quality reproductions can be seen in the city center showrooms. Josef Hoffmann's crystal chandelier for the Palais Stoclet in Brussels, Otto Wagner's outdoor lighting for Vienna's Stadtbahn commuter railway and Adolf Loos' designs for gentlemen's outfitters Knize are among the highlights. The luminaires are made by hand with some use of the original tools; each piece is dispatched with a certificate of authenticity.
Now in its sixth generation, legendary Viennese glass and lighting producer Lobmeyr is a byword for time-honored, quality manufacturing. The company (est. 1823) also has a long-standing tradition of working with leading designers to produce various timeless classics such as the B series drinking glasses which are manufactured according to the original sketches by key Wiener Werkstätte creative Josef Hoffmann.
There are several Josef Hoffmann designs in the Porzellanmanufaktur Augarten portfolio to this day. Introduced in 1929, his Melonenservice (a striking striped mocha set) has been in production ever since its introduction in 1929 - as has his Atlantis tea service (1930). New to the product range is the five-piece tea service “Bird Colony” in an original design by Koloman Moser.
From silver to fabric
The Vienna Silver Factory also has a rich heritage of the Wiener Werkstätte. The present-day manufactory has its roots in one of the oldest Austrian handicraft businesses and was an important partner to the Wiener Werkstätte. Flatware services and dishes to original designs by Josef Hoffman are available here, as are candlesticks and coffee and tea services by Otto Prutscher, including the famous Pumpkin service.
The renowned textiles manufacturer Backhausen was a leading supplier to the Wiener Werkstätte and collaborated with its artists in the founding year of 1903. The archives of Backhausen contain over 3,500 original designs from the Art Nouveau and Wiener Werkstätte period, from which the company still has numerous patterns manufactured at the production site in the Waldviertel. The fabric collections and accessories are available in the shop of the Österreichische Werkstätte.
Furniture created to original designs by Josef Hoffmann can only be produced by the Wittmann Furniture Workshops nowadays. The strictly geometric furniture, such as the Kubus chair from 1910 or the Purkersdorf chair, is still very much in demand.
Guided shopping tour
"Shopping with Lucie" offers guided tours through some of these stores. Lucie has further shopping tips on the topic of Vienna Modernism and the Wiener Werkstätte, which she shows to the participants on the tour. www.shoppingwithlucie.com (tour offering in English)