An exhibition at Designmuseum Danmark celebrates the 100th anniversary of Bauhaus
By FEDERICA LUSIARDI - 2019-05-22
Bauhaus#Itsalldesign at Designmuseum Danmark celebrates
the 100th anniversary of Bauhaus
Organized by the Vitra Design Museum and the Bundeskunsthalle of the German Federal Republic, the exhibition Bauhaus#Itsalldesign is open at the Designmuseum Danmark for the 100th anniversary of the art school founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar in 1919.
Bauhaus#Itsalldesign has been conceived both as a celebration event and to investigate the cultural heritage the school left, despite its brief period of activity of only 14 years from the foundation to the forced closure imposed by the Nazi regime in 1933.
The exhibition demonstrates the topicality of the teaching principles of what, at the time, was the first democratic school based on concepts such as non-hierarchical society and self-determination.
Such principles were already expresses in the manifesto that Gropius wrote in 1919, in which he advocated the union of architecture, painting, and sculpture into a new creative teaching method aimed to support a more equal society.
The school was based on the collaboration between teachers and students – many of which would lately become teachers in turn -, on interdisciplinarity, and on the central role of experimentation. In the Bauhaus led by Gropius – to whom Hannes Meyer and Mies van der Rohe will follow as directors – rationality and a clear methodological approach underlay the development of all disciplines, from urban planning to architecture, from industrial design to graphics, textile design, and fashion.
Walter Gropius (Text), manifesto and programme of the Staatliches Bauhaus in Weimar, 1919, book plate, private estate © VG Bild-Kunst Bonn, 2015
The exhibition presents pieces, some of which never publicly displayed before, related to the Bauhaus’ many creative fields and teaching programs, including architecture, product design, graphic design, cinema, theater, and graphic advertising. Pieces by Marianne Brandt, Marcel Breuer, Lyonel Feininger, Walter Gropius, and Wassily Kandinsky are displayed together with works by Lord Norman Foster, Konstantin Grcic, Hella Jongerius, and Enzo Mari – designers who were inspired – sometimes explicitly, sometimes more subtly – by the principles, methodology and projects of Bauhaus.
The exhibition makes clear how the concepts on which open source design and social design are based today are rooted in the principles of the Bauhaus school and in the idea that designers have an influence of the complex processes aimed to improve people’s living conditions.
above and cover image: Bauhaus #itsalldesign, installation views, photos by Pernille Klemp
Designmuseum Danmark also added a special section, entitled “Bauhaus – Danish Design“, which compares projects and theoretical concepts of those two seminal and world-renowned design currents.
The Bauhaus milestones
1919 – Gropius writes the Bauhaus manifesto, the school opens in Weimar
1925 – The Bauhaus moves to Dessau
1929 – Hannes Meyer takes on the direction of the school
1930 – Ludwig Mies van der Rohe replaces Meyer as director
1932 – the school relocates to Berlin
1933 – the school is closed by the Nazis
Mural workshop, Bauhaus Dessau, 1926, (photographer unknown) Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, Archiv der Moderne.
Advertising workshop, Bauhaus Dessau, 1926 (unknown photographer, source: Bibliothek der Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung)
Hannes Meyer, Co-op room, Basel, 1926, © Archiv ETH Zürich
Left: Marcel Breuer, lounge chair B 3 (known as Wassily Chair), 1925, Collection Vitra Design Museum, photo: © Vitra Design Museum, Jürgen Hans. Right: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, arm chair MR 20/3, 1927, Collection Vitra Design Museum, © VG Bild-Kunst Bonn, 2015
Konstantin Grcic, Pipe table and chair, 2009, Collection Vitra Design Museum,
photo: Florian Böhm
Enzo Mari, Proposta per un’autoprogettazione, 1973, Collection Vitra Design Museum
photo: Andreas Sütterlin
until December 1, 2019
images – courtesy of designmuseum Danmark
copyright Inexhibit 2019 - ISSN: 2283-5474