The White City Center

The White City Center (WCC) was co-founded by the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality and the German government at a historical and cultural crossroad in the heart of Tel Aviv. The WCC's mission is to actively preserve the heritage of the White City site and the international style, known in Israel as the Bauhaus.

Text

In 2003, UNESCO declared the White City zone in Tel Aviv as a unique World Heritage Site of the modern movement. The White City Center was founded in an effort to advance the recognition of the outstanding architectural landscape of Tel Aviv, with its collection of over 4,000 buildings built in the international style; an unparalleled global phenomenon.
The White City Center will operate at the Liebling House on 29 Idelson Street, one of a series of historic buildings erected around Bialik Square, in the area that was once the beating heart of Tel Aviv. Built by Tony and Max Liebling in 1936, it was designed by architect Dov Karmi with distinctive characteristics of the international style; entirely different from the decorated home of poet Haim Nachman Bialik, located around the corner.

Tel Aviv – the first Hebrew metropolis that sprawled along the shores of the Mediterranean with its gleaming white buildings – warmly embraced the international style that had conceptualized, expanded and reinvented modernism. The international style, while famous for buildings that have transcended national identity, implemented key practices and aesthetics, such as functionality, avoidance of ornamentation and the adoption of local considerations throughout the whole process.

Text

During the renovation period, we will hold a series of events under the title Open for Renovations. We will offer professional workshops; demonstrations of the different stages of the conservation; tours guided by the architects of project as well as leading professionals from the field; and other public events themed around various areas of the Apartment  - all designed to transform the site into a living model of international style building techniques that are often hidden behind scaffolding.

The renovation and conservation project of the Liebling House began in the summer of 2017, scheduled to be completed by 2019.

The Federal Cultural Foundation launched the Bauhaus Today Fund to emphasise the contemporary relevance of the ideas and methods advanced by the historical school of architecture, art and design. We invite institutions in all artistic areas to explore the significance of the Bauhaus today.

Website

Building Transfer – Materials in migration

financed through the Bauhaus Today Fund of Federal Cultural Foundation

Artistic directors: Hila Cohen Schniderman (IL), Ilit Azoulay (DE), Nir Shauloff (IL) Performance: Lou Moria (IL)
Curator: Sharon Golan Yaron (IL)

While the Bauhaus was being shut down in Germany in 1933, many German Jews were already emigrating to the British mandated territory of Palestine in what would later become the future state of Israel. That same year, several Zionist organisations and Nazi Germany signed an extremely controversial transfer agreement (Hebrew: “Ha’avara”) allowing as many Jews to emigrate to Palestine as possible. Until the outbreak of World War II, building materials from Germany worth millions were sent to Palestine as part of the agreement which offered tens of thousands of immigrant Jews an easier start at life. The materials also included goods which helped build the country, specifically residential buildings designed in modernist styles such as those found in the “White City” in Tel Aviv. This project takes the example of the Max Liebling House (White City Center) to investigate the legacy of the Ha’avara Agreement. Following a close inspection of the building and its materiality, the project aims to rewrite the narrative of the agreement, sketch the relationship of the house to other buildings in Tel Aviv and elsewhere, and highlight the influence of German culture. The walls of the house, its materials, building plans and above all, the people who planned, built and lived in the house provide the raw material for the study. The results will be presented in an exhibition, the core of which will comprise an installation that reflects on the backgrounds of these individuals and objects from a contemporary perspective.

Bauhaus projects around the world

Bauhaus was always a global phenomenon which reverberated around the world. The anniversary programme 100 years of bauhaus accordingly pays tribute to this.

Read more
Centre for Documentary Architecture, 2018, Photo: Anna Luise Schubert