The Bauhaus was a lively school of ideas and a field for experimenting in the free and applied arts, design, architecture and educational methods. Here we present the phases the Bauhaus went through, the places where it based its activities, its teaching, the people behind it and their works.
The Bauhaus was only active for 14 years: as the “State Bauhaus” in Weimar, as a “school of design” in Dessau and as a private education institute in Berlin. It evolved out of the arts and crafts movement and art school reforms. Its ideas had an impact well beyond the school itself, its locations and its time.
up to 1919
The period that led to the Bauhaus was very much influenced by approaches to education reform and by the pre-war arts and crafts movement.
In Weimar the Bauhaus was already a magnet for the European avant-garde because it was cosmopolitan in spirit and open to international artistic diversity.
The Bauhaus experienced its heyday in Dessau. Here the “State Bauhaus” became a “School of Design”.
Nazi repression and drastic cutbacks in funding made it almost impossible to work at the Bauhaus in Berlin.
The Bauhaus was the fruit of versatile input from both well-known avant-garde artists and aspiring junior masters, more than 1,250 students from 29 countries and their friends and families. In the “People” section we present the “Who’s Who” of the Bauhaus.
Walter Gropius, Hannes Meyer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe fundamentally defined the Bauhaus strategy as directors.
Masters and Teachers
Teachers were called “masters” at the Weimar State Bauhaus. They included renowned artists such as Feininger, Kandinsky, Marcks and Klee. Later on, outstanding Bauhaus graduates were appointed as junior masters. Moreover, to ensure students acquired an all-round training, the Bauhaus regularly invited along guest lecturers and speakers.
The creative atmosphere at the Bauhaus was a magnet for young people from over 29 countries. Some had no money at all, while others brought enough to feed their fellow students. They had one thing in common: they were now Bauhäusler and always would be.
The Bauhaus entourage
Some of the best-known Bauhaus personalities were neither students nor masters, but spouses, guest students, friends or colleagues working in the Gropius building studio. They, too, were deeply influenced by the art school and set their own stamp on the Bauhaus.
What does Bauhaus mean today? Here, we publish the latest news and introduce future themes, places, institutions and opinions related to the Bauhaus.
What Does the New Woman Need?
100 Years of Loheland colony. The Loheland colony in the foothills of the Rhön mountains was seen in the Weimar Republic as a provocation: here, women were empowered through gymnastics training to live self-determined lives. Like the Bauhaus, Loheland is also celebrating its hundredth anniversary this year. Elisabeth Mollenhauer-Klüber, together with Michael Siebenbrodt, has curated the anniversary exhibition in Vonderau Museum and explain what the emancipatory project was all about.
Modernistic Idyll in a Deteriorating City
The foundation stone for Lafayette Park was laid in Detroit on 22 November 1956. It was here that Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Ludwig Hilberseimer turned their ideas of flowing space and a New City into reality. Today the former industrial metropolis is the iconic image of a shrinking city – and Lafayette Park is an island in the middle of the eroding city.
"It’s striking! You have to hear us – you’ll be thinking of us.”
From the rhythmical noise of the Bauhaus band to the inspiring art of the fugue, to the performances of contemporary composers: Life at the Bauhaus was always accompanied by background music, though it was not even on the curriculum.
Bauhaus is a household name in the general public
An Interview with Jean Molitor
Since ten years the photographer Jean Molitor has travelled all over the world to capture modernism’s architectural testimonies for posterity. His archive against decay documents both Bauhaus icons and many unknown treasures. On the occasion of his exhibition in Chemnitz – which includes many regional buildings – we spoke to him about 100 years bauhaus and 10 years bauh1haus.
Searching for traces: the Bauhaus in Oldenburg?
In the research project “The Bauhaus in Oldenburg – avant-garde in the province, which was launched in 2016, we set out to find traces and to take a closer look at the regional Bauhaus history. The findings show: Oldenburg is a must on the Bauhaus map!
Crazy about Pictures
Hardly any discipline added to the regular teaching curriculum at a later stage, was as present at the Bauhaus as photography. John Grimes, professor emeritus of the Institute of Design, the New Bauhaus’ follow-on institution, and expert for the development of computer-supported digital imaging, gives an overview of 100 years of enthusiasm for imaging – from Dessau to Chicago, from the darkroom to the Cloud.
Bauhaus love stories
The Bauhaus did not only bring together art and craftsmanship, but also surprisingly many couples. On the occasion of Valentine’s Day we will have a closer look at some of the love stories at the Bauhaus.
The opening festival
The grand Bauhaus Year 2019 will be inaugurated with a large-scale opening festival in Berlin. For one week, international artists from the fields of dance, theater and music will be devoting their attention to contemporary topics within the context of the Bauhaus’s performative inquiries.
”Albers was a poet and a moralist“
In occasion of the exhibition “Josef Albers. Interaction” at the Villa Hügel in Essen, we met up with the Albers biographer Charles Darwent. Exclusively for 100 years of bauhaus, the author told us about Albers’ approach to the issue of color and material, his romantic side and why Albers never wanted to be “just” a Bauhausler.
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Masters and weavers
In this Bauhaus centenary, one often gets the impression that this laboratory of modernism was a trailblazer for pretty much everything. Its combination of industry, art and craft, its teaching methods, publications, the notion of the Gesamtkunstwerk... And last but not least, a holistic understanding of aesthetics, which many architects still value today as their personal guiding principle.
Plastics in the Bauhaus: Preserving Modernism
Conservators at the Bauhaus Dessau do not only handle steel, glass, or concrete, but also plastics such as Triolin. How far are they willing to let plastics show their age? And what does the centenary imply for future conservation work?
The Bauhaus Perspective on Green Spaces
The Bauhaus shifted perspectives further afield. Modernism turned familiar perforated façades into glass envelopes – thereby providing an unobstructed view of the outside world. What role does the outdoors play in the Bauhaus? What is its understanding of the countryside and green areas we live in? And how does the Bauhaus period inspire the design of open spaces today?