HVCCA, Word

Home in a Home, 2016, installation view at Hudson Valley MOCA

wallpaper – digital print on vinyl, molding, furniture, project’s survey, 12′ x 10’x 9′


The ongoing project Home in a Home by Kristyna and Marek Milde explores the identity of collectible objects important in creating the personal and psychological space that we identify as Home. Home in a Home is a project based on the research of the culture of dwelling. Since 2012 Mildes has continued to conduct a survey about personal stories and narratives of favorite objects people own and collect. Over the years they collected an archive of hundreds of responses from participants around the world. These statements and drawings became the foundation for creating an environment based on the idea of personal space. The gathered material served the artists to create a room of stories, in which the texts became patterns on the wallpaper that reveal the intangible layers of the fabric of a Home inside the physical space we live in. The images of favorite objects people draw in the questioners, Mildes embroidered on a tablecloth and placed on a dining table to highlight it as a space of shared memories and place of personal stories.

Home in a Home at Hudson Valley MOCA (2016) takes the form of a furnished living room functioning as a lounge and laboratory for exploring the concepts of domesticity. The walls of the installation are covered with organic diamond-patterned wallpaper, designed by the artists, which ornaments unfold the narrative. Its shapes, at first glance, appear to be purely decorative, however, close up they are revealed to be made entirely of text, a text which tells the stories of the things people collect and bring into their homes to transform and create their own personal space. The room is equipped with household objects such as a sofa, lamp, and coffee table. Visitors are invited to sit down and use the space as a lounge to contemplate what constitutes their personal space and actively participate in the project by completing a questionnaire about the unique non-functional objects in their own homes.

Rusty nail found in the forest, a collection of meteorites, a dead rosemary plant, a gift from a friend never opened, thousands of collectibles from various categories, precious objects organized together with banalities, souvenirs, trophies, valuable collections and memorabilia, a variety of natural materials brought from trips, art objects, paintings, photographs, things found and received etc. These things seemingly excessive in our homes together reveal a narrative about places and people, their desires and dreams, in which the objects are mediators of the contexts.


 HVCCA, Word, Kristyna and Marek Milde, Home in a Home

Home in a Home, at HVCCA, 2016, detail from the wallpaper pattern, digital print on vinyl,  dimensions variable


We experienced that architecture does not provide Home automatically, it is a quality rather elusive that has to be attained and then maintained“, explains the Mildes With the project we research what creates the sense of a home in the houses, rooms and spaces we inhabit, by exploring the remarkable ways people develop to create this kind of space, while building their home within the physical space of the dwelling.

The collectible objects in our homes have a prominent role as the embodiment of memories and experiences accumulated over time, sustaining the private universe of its owners. The personal choices and combinations we make, the way of placement and display create new environments, representing unique systems of personal hierarchy. The objects in general represent the world that extends beyond the four walls expressing a need to transform the space of the white, blank boxes we inhabit, while building a connection to a context, which the architecture of the walled space is lacking say the Mildes.


While reading the stories on the walls in the Home in a Home installation, space becomes an active environment of shared intimacy, mapping patterns of personal thoughts and longings – original and universal at the same time. The wallpaper, which would normally function to decorate and cover the walls to create a spatial illusion, becomes a doorway into the fragile architecture of the personal space that constitutes the integrity of our Homes.

The installation Home in a Home in the exhibition Word at HVCCA resumes this ongoing project on the integrity of modern lifestyles, which started as part of Milde Thoughts on the Living Room workshop at the MoMA Studio in New York (2012) and continued as part of the exhibition Homescapes the Karlin Studios in Prague (2012), Where Is My Home the DOX Center for Contemporary Art in Prague (2013) and exhibition (In)Visible Patterns in Gallery G18 Zlin in 2019.

PDF: Press Release Word at HVCCA