The Bauhaus building in Weimar
The Bauhaus building in Dessau
Memorial plate, Bauhaus Berlin
|UNESCO World Heritage Site|
ADGB Trade Union School in Bernau bei Berlin
|Criteria||Cultural: ii, iv, vi|
|Inscription||1996 (20th Session)|
|Buffer zone||59.26 ha|
The Staatliches Bauhaus (German: [ˈʃtaːtlɪçəs ˈbaʊˌhaʊs] (
Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north and the Alps, Lake Constance and the High Rhine to the south. It borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, and Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands to the west.
An art school is an educational institution with a primary focus on the visual arts, including fine art, especially illustration, painting, photography, sculpture, and graphic design. Art schools can offer elementary, secondary, post-secondary, or undergraduate programs, and can also offer a broad-based range of programs. There have been six major periods of art school curricula, and each one has had its own hand in developing modern institutions worldwide throughout all levels of education. Art schools have also created a variety of non-academic skills for many students as well.
A design is a plan or specification for the construction of an object or system or for the implementation of an activity or process, or the result of that plan or specification in the form of a prototype, product or process. The verb to design expresses the process of developing a design. In some cases, the direct construction of an object without an explicit prior plan may also be considered to be a design activity. A design usually has to satisfy certain goals and constraints, may take into account aesthetic, functional, economic, or socio-political considerations, and is expected to interact with a certain environment. Major examples of designs include architectural blueprints, engineering drawings, business processes, circuit diagrams, and sewing patterns.
The Bauhaus was founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar. The German term Bauhaus —literally "building house"—was understood as meaning "School of Building", but in spite of its name and the fact that its founder was an architect, the Bauhaus did not initially have an architecture department. Nonetheless, it was founded upon the idea of creating a Gesamtkunstwerk ("'total' work of art") in which all the arts, including architecture, would eventually be brought together. The Bauhaus style later became one of the most influential currents in modern design, Modernist architecture and art, design, and architectural education.The Bauhaus movement had a profound influence upon subsequent developments in art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, and typography.
Walter Adolph Georg Gropius was a German architect and founder of the Bauhaus School, who, along with Alvar Aalto, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright, is widely regarded as one of the pioneering masters of modernist architecture. Gropius was also a leading architect of the International Style.
Weimar is a city in the federal state of Thuringia, Germany. It is located in Central Germany between Erfurt in the west and Jena in the east, approximately 80 kilometres southwest of Leipzig, 170 kilometres north of Nuremberg and 170 kilometres west of Dresden. Together with the neighbour-cities Erfurt and Jena it forms the central metropolitan area of Thuringia with approximately 500,000 inhabitants, whereas the city itself counts a population of 65,000. Weimar is well known because of its large cultural heritage and its importance in German history.
An architect is a person who plans, designs and reviews the construction of buildings. To practice architecture means to provide services in connection with the design of buildings and the space within the site surrounding the buildings that have human occupancy or use as their principal purpose. Etymologically, architect derives from the Latin architectus, which derives from the Greek, i.e., chief builder.
The school existed in three German cities—Weimar, from 1919 to 1925; Dessau, from 1925 to 1932; and Berlin, from 1932 to 1933—under three different architect-directors: Walter Gropius from 1919 to 1928; Hannes Meyer from 1928 to 1930; and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe from 1930 until 1933, when the school was closed by its own leadership under pressure from the Nazi regime, having been painted as a centre of communist intellectualism. Although the school was closed, the staff continued to spread its idealistic precepts as they left Germany and emigrated all over the world.
Dessau is a town and former municipality in Germany on the junction of the rivers Mulde and Elbe, in the Bundesland of Saxony-Anhalt. Since 1 July 2007, it has been part of the newly created municipality of Dessau-Roßlau. Population of Dessau proper: 77,973.
Berlin is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,748,148 (2018) inhabitants make it the second most populous city proper of the European Union after London. The city is one of Germany's 16 federal states. It is surrounded by the state of Brandenburg, and contiguous with Potsdam, Brandenburg's capital. The two cities are at the center of the Berlin-Brandenburg capital region, which is, with about six million inhabitants and an area of more than 30,000 km², Germany's third-largest metropolitan region after the Rhine-Ruhr and Rhine-Main regions.
Hans Emil "Hannes" Meyer was a Swiss architect and second director of the Bauhaus Dessau from 1928 to 1930.
The changes of venue and leadership resulted in a constant shifting of focus, technique, instructors, and politics. For example, the pottery shop was discontinued when the school moved from Weimar to Dessau, even though it had been an important revenue source; when Mies van der Rohe took over the school in 1930, he transformed it into a private school and would not allow any supporters of Hannes Meyer to attend it.
After Germany's defeat in World War I and the establishment of the Weimar Republic, a renewed liberal spirit allowed an upsurge of radical experimentation in all the arts, which had been suppressed by the old regime. Many Germans of left-wing views were influenced by the cultural experimentation that followed the Russian Revolution, such as constructivism. Such influences can be overstated: Gropius did not share these radical views, and said that Bauhaus was entirely apolitical.Just as important was the influence of the 19th-century English designer William Morris (1834–1896), who had argued that art should meet the needs of society and that there should be no distinction between form and function. Thus, the Bauhaus style, also known as the International Style, was marked by the absence of ornamentation and by harmony between the function of an object or a building and its design.
World War I, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history. It is also one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the resulting 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide.
The Weimar Republic is an unofficial historical designation for the German state from 1918 to 1933. The name derives from the city of Weimar, where its constitutional assembly first took place. The official name of the republic remained Deutsches Reich unchanged from 1871, because of the German tradition of substates. Although commonly translated as ’German Empire’, the word Reich here better translates as ’realm’, in that the term does not have monarchical connotations in itself. The Reich was changed from a constitutional monarchy into a republic. In English, the country was usually known simply as Germany.
The Russian Revolution was a period of political and social revolution across the territory of the Russian Empire which started with the abolishment of monarchy and concluded with the establishment of the Soviet Union by the bolsheviks and the end of the civil war.
However, the most important influence on Bauhaus was modernism, a cultural movement whose origins lay as early as the 1880s, and which had already made its presence felt in Germany before the World War, despite the prevailing conservatism. The design innovations commonly associated with Gropius and the Bauhaus—the radically simplified forms, the rationality and functionality, and the idea that mass production was reconcilable with the individual artistic spirit—were already partly developed in Germany before the Bauhaus was founded. The German national designers' organization Deutscher Werkbund was formed in 1907 by Hermann Muthesius to harness the new potentials of mass production, with a mind towards preserving Germany's economic competitiveness with England. In its first seven years, the Werkbund came to be regarded as the authoritative body on questions of design in Germany, and was copied in other countries. Many fundamental questions of craftsmanship versus mass production, the relationship of usefulness and beauty, the practical purpose of formal beauty in a commonplace object, and whether or not a single proper form could exist, were argued out among its 1,870 members (by 1914).
Modernism is both a philosophical movement and an art movement that, along with cultural trends and changes, arose from wide-scale and far-reaching transformations in Western society during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Among the factors that shaped modernism were the development of modern industrial societies and the rapid growth of cities, followed then by reactions of horror to World War I. Modernism also rejected the certainty of Enlightenment thinking, although many modernists also rejected religious belief.
Mass production, also known as flow production or continuous production, is the production of large amounts of standardized products, including and especially on assembly lines. Together with job production and batch production, it is one of the three main production methods.
The Deutscher Werkbund is a German association of artists, architects, designers, and industrialists, established in 1907. The Werkbund became an important element in the development of modern architecture and industrial design, particularly in the later creation of the Bauhaus school of design. Its initial purpose was to establish a partnership of product manufacturers with design professionals to improve the competitiveness of German companies in global markets. The Werkbund was less an artistic movement than a state-sponsored effort to integrate traditional crafts and industrial mass production techniques, to put Germany on a competitive footing with England and the United States. Its motto Vom Sofakissen zum Städtebau indicates its range of interest.
German architectural modernism was known as Neues Bauen. Beginning in June 1907, Peter Behrens' pioneering industrial design work for the German electrical company AEG successfully integrated art and mass production on a large scale. He designed consumer products, standardized parts, created clean-lined designs for the company's graphics, developed a consistent corporate identity, built the modernist landmark AEG Turbine Factory, and made full use of newly developed materials such as poured concrete and exposed steel. Behrens was a founding member of the Werkbund, and both Walter Gropius and Adolf Meyer worked for him in this period.
The Bauhaus was founded at a time when the German zeitgeist had turned from emotional Expressionism to the matter-of-fact New Objectivity. An entire group of working architects, including Erich Mendelsohn, Bruno Taut and Hans Poelzig, turned away from fanciful experimentation, and turned toward rational, functional, sometimes standardized building. Beyond the Bauhaus, many other significant German-speaking architects in the 1920s responded to the same aesthetic issues and material possibilities as the school. They also responded to the promise of a "minimal dwelling" written into the new Weimar Constitution. Ernst May, Bruno Taut and Martin Wagner, among others, built large housing blocks in Frankfurt and Berlin. The acceptance of modernist design into everyday life was the subject of publicity campaigns, well-attended public exhibitions like the Weissenhof Estate, films, and sometimes fierce public debate.
The Vkhutemas, the Russian state art and technical school founded in 1920 in Moscow, has been compared to Bauhaus. Founded a year after the Bauhaus school, Vkhutemas has close parallels to the German Bauhaus in its intent, organization and scope. The two schools were the first to train artist-designers in a modern manner.Both schools were state-sponsored initiatives to merge the craft tradition with modern technology, with a basic course in aesthetic principles, courses in color theory, industrial design, and architecture. Vkhutemas was a larger school than the Bauhaus, but it was less publicised outside the Soviet Union and consequently, is less familiar in the West.
With the internationalism of modern architecture and design, there were many exchanges between the Vkhutemas and the Bauhaus.The second Bauhaus director Hannes Meyer attempted to organise an exchange between the two schools, while Hinnerk Scheper of the Bauhaus collaborated with various Vkhutein members on the use of colour in architecture. In addition, El Lissitzky's book Russia: an Architecture for World Revolution published in German in 1930 featured several illustrations of Vkhutemas/Vkhutein projects there.
The school was founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar on April 12, 1919 as a merger of the Weimar Saxon Grand Ducal Art School and the Weimar Academy of Fine Art. Its roots lay in the arts and crafts school founded by the Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach in 1906, and directed by Belgian Art Nouveau architect Henry van de Velde.When van de Velde was forced to resign in 1915 because he was Belgian, he suggested Gropius, Hermann Obrist, and August Endell as possible successors. In 1919, after delays caused by World War I and a lengthy debate over who should head the institution and the socio-economic meanings of a reconciliation of the fine arts and the applied arts (an issue which remained a defining one throughout the school's existence), Gropius was made the director of a new institution integrating the two called the Bauhaus. In the pamphlet for an April 1919 exhibition entitled Exhibition of Unknown Architects, Gropius proclaimed his goal as being "to create a new guild of craftsmen, without the class distinctions which raise an arrogant barrier between craftsman and artist." Gropius's neologism Bauhaus references both building and the Bauhütte, a premodern guild of stonemasons. The early intention was for the Bauhaus to be a combined architecture school, crafts school, and academy of the arts. Swiss painter Johannes Itten, German-American painter Lyonel Feininger, and German sculptor Gerhard Marcks, along with Gropius, comprised the faculty of the Bauhaus in 1919. By the following year their ranks had grown to include German painter, sculptor, and designer Oskar Schlemmer who headed the theater workshop, and Swiss painter Paul Klee, joined in 1922 by Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky. A tumultuous year at the Bauhaus, 1922 also saw the move of Dutch painter Theo van Doesburg to Weimar to promote De Stijl ("The Style"), and a visit to the Bauhaus by Russian Constructivist artist and architect El Lissitzky.
From 1919 to 1922 the school was shaped by the pedagogical and aesthetic ideas of Johannes Itten, who taught the Vorkurs or "preliminary course" that was the introduction to the ideas of the Bauhaus.Itten was heavily influenced in his teaching by the ideas of Franz Cižek and Friedrich Wilhelm August Fröbel. He was also influenced in respect to aesthetics by the work of the Der Blaue Reiter group in Munich, as well as the work of Austrian Expressionist Oskar Kokoschka. The influence of German Expressionism favoured by Itten was analogous in some ways to the fine arts side of the ongoing debate. This influence culminated with the addition of Der Blaue Reiter founding member Wassily Kandinsky to the faculty and ended when Itten resigned in late 1922. Itten was replaced by the Hungarian designer László Moholy-Nagy, who rewrote the Vorkurs with a leaning towards the New Objectivity favored by Gropius, which was analogous in some ways to the applied arts side of the debate. Although this shift was an important one, it did not represent a radical break from the past so much as a small step in a broader, more gradual socio-economic movement that had been going on at least since 1907, when van de Velde had argued for a craft basis for design while Hermann Muthesius had begun implementing industrial prototypes.
Gropius was not necessarily against Expressionism, and in fact himself in the same 1919 pamphlet proclaiming this "new guild of craftsmen, without the class snobbery", described "painting and sculpture rising to heaven out of the hands of a million craftsmen, the crystal symbol of the new faith of the future." By 1923, however, Gropius was no longer evoking images of soaring Romanesque cathedrals and the craft-driven aesthetic of the "Völkisch movement", instead declaring "we want an architecture adapted to our world of machines, radios and fast cars."Gropius argued that a new period of history had begun with the end of the war. He wanted to create a new architectural style to reflect this new era. His style in architecture and consumer goods was to be functional, cheap and consistent with mass production. To these ends, Gropius wanted to reunite art and craft to arrive at high-end functional products with artistic merit. The Bauhaus issued a magazine called Bauhaus and a series of books called "Bauhausbücher". Since the Weimar Republic lacked the quantity of raw materials available to the United States and Great Britain, it had to rely on the proficiency of a skilled labor force and an ability to export innovative and high quality goods. Therefore, designers were needed and so was a new type of art education. The school's philosophy stated that the artist should be trained to work with the industry.
Weimar was in the German state of Thuringia, and the Bauhaus school received state support from the Social Democrat-controlled Thuringian state government. The school in Weimar experienced political pressure from conservative circles in Thuringian politics, increasingly so after 1923 as political tension rose. One condition placed on the Bauhaus in this new political environment was the exhibition of work undertaken at the school. This condition was met in 1923 with the Bauhaus' exhibition of the experimental Haus am Horn.The Ministry of Education placed the staff on six-month contracts and cut the school's funding in half. The Bauhaus issued a press release on 26 December 1924, setting the closure of the school for the end of March 1925. At this point it had already been looking for alternative sources of funding. After the Bauhaus moved to Dessau, a school of industrial design with teachers and staff less antagonistic to the conservative political regime remained in Weimar. This school was eventually known as the Technical University of Architecture and Civil Engineering, and in 1996 changed its name to Bauhaus-University Weimar.
Gropius's design for the Dessau facilities was a return to the futuristic Gropius of 1914 that had more in common with the International style lines of the Fagus Factory than the stripped down Neo-classical of the Werkbund pavilion or the Völkisch Sommerfeld House.During the Dessau years, there was a remarkable change in direction for the school. According to Elaine Hoffman, Gropius had approached the Dutch architect Mart Stam to run the newly founded architecture program, and when Stam declined the position, Gropius turned to Stam's friend and colleague in the ABC group, Hannes Meyer.
Meyer became director when Gropius resigned in February 1928,and brought the Bauhaus its two most significant building commissions, both of which still exist: five apartment buildings in the city of Dessau, and the Bundesschule des Allgemeinen Deutschen Gewerkschaftsbundes (ADGB Trade Union School) in Bernau bei Berlin. Meyer favored measurements and calculations in his presentations to clients, along with the use of off-the-shelf architectural components to reduce costs. This approach proved attractive to potential clients. The school turned its first profit under his leadership in 1929.
But Meyer also generated a great deal of conflict. As a radical functionalist, he had no patience with the aesthetic program, and forced the resignations of Herbert Bayer, Marcel Breuer, and other long-time instructors. Even though Meyer shifted the orientation of the school further to the left than it had been under Gropius, he didn't want the school to become a tool of left-wing party politics. He prevented the formation of a student communist cell, and in the increasingly dangerous political atmosphere, this became a threat to the existence of the Dessau school. Dessau mayor Fritz Hesse fired him in the summer of 1930.The Dessau city council attempted to convince Gropius to return as head of the school, but Gropius instead suggested Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. Mies was appointed in 1930, and immediately interviewed each student, dismissing those that he deemed uncommitted. He halted the school's manufacture of goods so that the school could focus on teaching, and appointed no new faculty other than his close confidant Lilly Reich. By 1931, the National Socialist German Workers' Party (Nazi Party) was becoming more influential in German politics. When it gained control of the Dessau city council, it moved to close the school.
In late 1932, Mies rented a derelict factory in Berlin (Birkbusch Street 49) to use as the new Bauhaus with his own money. The students and faculty rehabilitated the building, painting the interior white. The school operated for ten months without further interference from the Nazi Party. In 1933, the Gestapo closed down the Berlin school. Mies protested the decision, eventually speaking to the head of the Gestapo, who agreed to allow the school to re-open. However, shortly after receiving a letter permitting the opening of the Bauhaus, Mies and the other faculty agreed to voluntarily shut down the school [ when? ].
Although neither the Nazi Party nor Adolf Hitler had a cohesive architectural policy before they came to power in 1933, Nazi writers like Wilhelm Frick and Alfred Rosenberg had already labeled the Bauhaus "un-German" and criticized its modernist styles, deliberately generating public controversy over issues like flat roofs. Increasingly through the early 1930s, they characterized the Bauhaus as a front for communists and social liberals. Indeed, a number of communist students loyal to Meyer moved to the Soviet Union when he was fired in 1930.
Even before the Nazis came to power, political pressure on Bauhaus had increased. The Nazi movement, from nearly the start, denounced the Bauhaus for its "degenerate art", and the Nazi regime was determined to crack down on what it saw as the foreign, probably Jewish influences of "cosmopolitan modernism".Despite Gropius's protestations that as a war veteran and a patriot his work had no subversive political intent, the Berlin Bauhaus was pressured to close in April 1933. Emigrants did succeed, however, in spreading the concepts of the Bauhaus to other countries, including the "New Bauhaus" of Chicago: Mies decided to emigrate to the United States for the directorship of the School of Architecture at the Armour Institute (now Illinois Institute of Technology) in Chicago and to seek building commissions. [a] The simple engineering-oriented functionalism of stripped-down modernism, however, did lead to some Bauhaus influences living on in Nazi Germany. When Hitler's chief engineer, Fritz Todt, began opening the new autobahn (highways) in 1935, many of the bridges and service stations were "bold examples of modernism"—among those submitting designs was Mies van der Rohe.
The paradox of the early Bauhaus was that, although its manifesto proclaimed that the aim of all creative activity was building,the school did not offer classes in architecture until 1927. During the years under Gropius (1919–1927), he and his partner Adolf Meyer observed no real distinction between the output of his architectural office and the school. So the built output of Bauhaus architecture in these years is the output of Gropius: the Sommerfeld house in Berlin, the Otte house in Berlin, the Auerbach house in Jena, and the competition design for the Chicago Tribune Tower, which brought the school much attention. The definitive 1926 Bauhaus building in Dessau is also attributed to Gropius. Apart from contributions to the 1923 Haus am Horn, student architectural work amounted to un-built projects, interior finishes, and craft work like cabinets, chairs and pottery.
In the next two years under Meyer, the architectural focus shifted away from aesthetics and towards functionality. There were major commissions: one from the city of Dessau for five tightly designed "Laubenganghäuser" (apartment buildings with balcony access), which are still in use today, and another for the Bundesschule des Allgemeinen Deutschen Gewerkschaftsbundes (ADGB Trade Union School) in Bernau bei Berlin. Meyer's approach was to research users' needs and scientifically develop the design solution.
Mies van der Rohe repudiated Meyer's politics, his supporters, and his architectural approach. As opposed to Gropius's "study of essentials", and Meyer's research into user requirements, Mies advocated a "spatial implementation of intellectual decisions", which effectively meant an adoption of his own aesthetics. Neither Mies van der Rohe nor his Bauhaus students saw any projects built during the 1930s.
The popular conception of the Bauhaus as the source of extensive Weimar-era working housing is not accurate. Two projects, the apartment building project in Dessau and the Törten row housing also in Dessau, fall in that category, but developing worker housing was not the first priority of Gropius nor Mies. It was the Bauhaus contemporaries Bruno Taut, Hans Poelzig and particularly Ernst May, as the city architects of Berlin, Dresden and Frankfurt respectively, who are rightfully credited with the thousands of socially progressive housing units built in Weimar Germany. The housing Taut built in south-west Berlin during the 1920s, close to the U-Bahn stop Onkel Toms Hütte, is still occupied.
The Bauhaus had a major impact on art and architecture trends in Western Europe, Canada, the United States and Israel in the decades following its demise, as many of the artists involved fled, or were exiled by the Nazi regime. Tel Aviv in 2004 was named to the list of world heritage sites by the UN due to its abundance of Bauhaus architecture;it had some 4,000 Bauhaus buildings erected from 1933 onwards.
In 1928, the Hungarian painter Alexander Bortnyik founded a school of design in Budapest called Miihely (also "Muhely"or "Mugely" ), which means "the studio". Located on the seventh floor of a house on Nagymezo Street, it was meant to be the Hungarian equivalent to the Bauhaus. The literature sometimes refers to it—in an oversimplified manner—as "the Budapest Bauhaus". Bortnyik was a great admirer of László Moholy-Nagy and had met Walter Gropius in Weimar between 1923 and 1925. Moholy-Nagy himself taught at the Miihely. Victor Vasarely, a pioneer of Op Art, studied at this school before establishing in Paris in 1930.
Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, and Moholy-Nagy re-assembled in Britain during the mid 1930s to live and work in the Isokon project before the war caught up with them. Gropius and Breuer went to teach at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and worked together before their professional split. Their collaboration produced the Aluminum City Terrace in New Kensington, Pennsylvania and the Alan I W Frank House in Pittsburgh, among other projects. The Harvard School was enormously influential in America in the late 1920s and early 1930s, producing such students as Philip Johnson, I. M. Pei, Lawrence Halprin and Paul Rudolph, among many others.
In the late 1930s, Mies van der Rohe re-settled in Chicago, enjoyed the sponsorship of the influential Philip Johnson, and became one of the pre-eminent architects in the world. Moholy-Nagy also went to Chicago and founded the New Bauhaus school under the sponsorship of industrialist and philanthropist Walter Paepcke. This school became the Institute of Design, part of the Illinois Institute of Technology. Printmaker and painter Werner Drewes was also largely responsible for bringing the Bauhaus aesthetic to America and taught at both Columbia University and Washington University in St. Louis. Herbert Bayer, sponsored by Paepcke, moved to Aspen, Colorado in support of Paepcke's Aspen projects at the Aspen Institute. In 1953, Max Bill, together with Inge Aicher-Scholl and Otl Aicher, founded the Ulm School of Design (German: Hochschule für Gestaltung – HfG Ulm) in Ulm, Germany, a design school in the tradition of the Bauhaus. The school is notable for its inclusion of semiotics as a field of study. The school closed in 1968, but the "Ulm Model" concept continues to influence international design education.
The influence of the Bauhaus on design education was significant. One of the main objectives of the Bauhaus was to unify art, craft, and technology, and this approach was incorporated into the curriculum of the Bauhaus. The structure of the Bauhaus Vorkurs (preliminary course) reflected a pragmatic approach to integrating theory and application. In their first year, students learnt the basic elements and principles of design and colour theory, and experimented with a range of materials and processes.This approach to design education became a common feature of architectural and design school in many countries. For example, the Shillito Design School in Sydney stands as a unique link between Australia and the Bauhaus. The colour and design syllabus of the Shillito Design School was firmly underpinned by the theories and ideologies of the Bauhaus. Its first year foundational course mimicked the Vorkurs and focused on the elements and principles of design plus colour theory and application. The founder of the school, Phyllis Shillito, which opened in 1962 and closed in 1980, firmly believed that "A student who has mastered the basic principles of design, can design anything from a dress to a kitchen stove".
One of the most important contributions of the Bauhaus is in the field of modern furniture design. The characteristic Cantilever chair and Wassily Chair designed by Marcel Breuer are two examples. (Breuer eventually lost a legal battle in Germany with Dutch architect/designer Mart Stam over patent rights to the cantilever chair design. Although Stam had worked on the design of the Bauhaus's 1923 exhibit in Weimar, and guest-lectured at the Bauhaus later in the 1920s, he was not formally associated with the school, and he and Breuer had worked independently on the cantilever concept, leading to the patent dispute.) The most profitable product of the Bauhaus was its wallpaper.
The physical plant at Dessau survived World War II and was operated as a design school with some architectural facilities by the German Democratic Republic. This included live stage productions in the Bauhaus theater under the name of Bauhausbühne ("Bauhaus Stage"). After German reunification, a reorganized school continued in the same building, with no essential continuity with the Bauhaus under Gropius in the early 1920s.In 1979 Bauhaus-Dessau College started to organize postgraduate programs with participants from all over the world. This effort has been supported by the Bauhaus-Dessau Foundation which was founded in 1974 as a public institution.
Later evaluation of the Bauhaus design credo was critical of its flawed recognition of the human element, an acknowledgment of "the dated, unattractive aspects of the Bauhaus as a projection of utopia marked by mechanistic views of human nature…Home hygiene without home atmosphere."
The White City (Hebrew: העיר הלבנה, Ha-Ir ha-Levana) refers to a collection of over 4,000 buildings built in the Bauhaus or International Style in Tel Aviv from the 1930s by German Jewish architects who immigrated to the British Mandate of Palestine after the rise of the Nazis. Tel Aviv has the largest number of buildings in the Bauhaus/International Style of any city in the world. Preservation, documentation, and exhibitions have brought attention to Tel Aviv's collection of 1930s architecture. In 2003, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) proclaimed Tel Aviv's White City a World Cultural Heritage site, as "an outstanding example of new town planning and architecture in the early 20th century." The citation recognized the unique adaptation of modern international architectural trends to the cultural, climatic, and local traditions of the city. Bauhaus Center Tel Aviv organizes regular architectural tours of the city.
As the centenary of the founding of Bauhaus, several events, festivals and exhibitions are planned around the world in 2019. The international opening festival at the Berlin Academy of the Arts from 16 to 24 January concentrated on "the presentation and production of pieces by contemporary artists, in which the aesthetic issues and experimental configurations of the Bauhaus artists continue to be inspiringly contagious".
People who were educated, or who taught or worked in other capacities, at the Bauhaus.
The International Style is a major architectural style that was developed in the 1920s and 1930s and was closely related to modernism and modern architecture. It was first defined by Museum of Modern Art curators Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson in 1932, based on works of architecture from the 1920s.
Modern architecture, or modernist architecture was based upon new and innovative technologies of construction, particularly the use of glass, steel and reinforced concrete; the idea that form should follow function (→functionalism); an embrace of minimalism; and a rejection of ornament. It emerged in the first half of the 20th century and became dominant after World War II until the 1980s, when it was gradually replaced as the principal style for institutional and corporate buildings by postmodern architecture.
Johannes Itten was a Swiss expressionist painter, designer, teacher, writer and theorist associated with the Bauhaus school. Together with German-American painter Lyonel Feininger and German sculptor Gerhard Marcks, under the direction of German architect Walter Gropius, Itten was part of the core of the Weimar Bauhaus.
Marianne Brandt, German painter, sculptor, photographer and designer who studied at the Bauhaus art school in Weimar and later became head of the Bauhaus Metall-Werkstatt in Dessau in 1927. Today, Brandt's designs for household objects such as lamps, ashtrays and teapots are considered timeless examples of modern industrial design. She is also created of photomontages.
Ludwig Karl Hilberseimer (1885–1967) was a German architect and urban planner best known for his ties to the Bauhaus and to Mies van der Rohe, as well as for his work in urban planning at Armour Institute of Technology, in Chicago, Illinois.
The Bauhaus-Universität Weimar is a university located in Weimar, Germany, and specializes in the artistic and technical fields. Established in 1860 as the Great Ducal Saxon Art School, it gained collegiate status on 3 June 1910. In 1919 the school was renamed Bauhaus by its new director Walter Gropius and it received its present name in 1996. Approximately 4,000 students are enrolled at the university today. In 2010 the Bauhaus-Universität commemorated its 150th anniversary as an art school and college in Weimar.
The Haus am Horn is a domestic house in Weimar, Germany, designed by Georg Muche. It was built for the Bauhaus Werkschau exhibition which ran from July to September 1923. It was the first building based on Bauhaus design principles, which revolutionized 20th century architectural and aesthetic thinking and practice
Gunta Stölzl was a German textile artist who played a fundamental role in the development of the Bauhaus school's weaving workshop. As the Bauhaus' only female master she created enormous change within the weaving department as it transitioned from individual pictorial works to modern industrial designs. Her textile work is thought to typify the distinctive style of Bauhaus textiles. She joined the Bauhaus as a student in 1920, became a junior master in 1927 and a full master the next year. She was dismissed for political reasons in 1931, two years before the Bauhaus closed under pressure from the Nazis.
The New Objectivity is a name often given to the Modern architecture that emerged in Europe, primarily German-speaking Europe, in the 1920s and 30s. It is also frequently called Neues Bauen. The New Objectivity remodeled many German cities in this period.
Ernst Neufert was a German architect who is known as an assistant of Walter Gropius, as a teacher and member of various standardization organizations, and especially for his essential handbook Architects' data.
Arieh Sharon was an Israeli architect and winner of the Israel Prize for Architecture in 1962. Sharon was a critical contributor to the early architecture in Israel and the leader of the first master plan of the young state, reporting to then Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion. Sharon studied at the Bauhaus in Dessau under Walter Gropius and Hannes Meyer and on his return to Israel in 1931, started building in the International Style, better known locally as the Bauhaus style of Tel Aviv. Sharon built private houses, cinemas and in 1937 his first hospital, a field in which he specialized in his later career, planning and constructing many of the country's largest medical centers.
Georg Muche was a German painter, printmaker, architect, author, and teacher.
New Frankfurt was an affordable public housing program in Frankfurt started in 1925 and completed in 1930. It was also the name of the accompanying magazine that was published from 1926 to 1931 dedicated to international trends in architecture, art, housing and education.
The ADGB Trade Union School, is a training centre complex in Bernau bei Berlin, Germany, built for the former Federation of German Trade Unions, from 1928 to 1930. It is a textbook example of Bauhaus functionalist architecture, both in the finished product and in the analytical and collaborative approach used develop the design and complete the project. Next to the Bauhaus Dessau building, it was the second largest project ever undertaken by the Bauhaus.
Erich Consemüller was a German photographer and architect who studied and taught at Bauhaus art school. He worked alongside the photographer Lucia Moholy documenting life at the Bauhaus.
Alexander Schawinsky, known as Xanti Schawinsky was a Swiss painter, photographer and theatre designer. An alumnus of the Bauhaus, Schawinsky belonged to the circle around Bauhaus founder and architect Walter Gropius.
Bauhaus and its Sites in Weimar, Dessau and Bernau is a joint World Heritage Site in Germany, comprising six separate sites which are associated with the Bauhaus art school. It was designated in 1996, initially with four sites and in 2017 two further sites were added.
Friedrich Konrad Püschel was a German architect, town planner, and university professor who was educated at the Bauhaus design school. He worked in East Germany, the Soviet Union, and North Korea.
He invented the name 'Bauhaus' not only because it specifically referred to bauen ('building', 'construction')—but also because of its similarity to the word Bauhütte, the medieval guild of builders and stonemasons out of which Freemasonry sprang. The Bauhaus was to be a kind of modern Bauhütte, therefore, in which craftsmen would work on common projects together, the greatest of which would be buildings in which the arts and crafts would be combined.
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