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Bauhaus exhibitions, exactly 100 years after the Academy opened in Germany

I wrote about Bauhaus' 100th anniversary: 1919-2019 a few months ago. Basically, when the tragedies of WW1 finally ended, architect Walter Gropius founded Bauhaus School of Art & D in Weimar Germany to design for the new world. Although operating for only 14 years (1919-33) be­fore being shut down by the Nazis, Bauhaus was said to have become the most influential art and design academy in history.

In 1976 the Galerie am Sachsenplatz in Leipzig sold 148 Bauhauser works to the City of Dessau. The objects kept in this dist­inctive Dessau Collection told the story of teaching and learning, free design, the development of indust­r­ial prototypes, artistic experiment and links with the market­place. And consider its stars across a range of dis­cip­lin­es, including typo­grapher Herbert Bayer, textile art­ist Anni Albers and sculptor Mar­ianne Brandt. Teachers included artist Wassily Kandinsky and arch­itect Mies van der Rohe.

The Bauhaus Museum Dessau design came from Barcelona, selected from 800+ submissions in a 2015 international competition. The jury want­­ed a soaring steelwork block in a glass envelope, designed in the Bauhaus spirit and paid for by the Federal and the State Governments in Germany.

Architect FRS Yorke and designer Marcel Breuer. 
RIBA Collections

The foundation stone for the new museum was laid in Dec 2016. The transparent ground floor, the Open Stage museum foyer, serves as an open platform offering temporary exhibitions of cont­emporary works. The museum is located in the city park in the centre of Dessau, connecting the central business district and the periphery of the park. In Sept 2018, the upper floor and roof area were completed.

The opening of Bauhaus Museum Dessau in Sept 2019 was a highlight of the centenary. And the unique collection, with 49,000 catal­og­ued objects, has been on display. Called Versuchs­stätte Bauhaus - The Collection visitors can travel the historical exhib­it­ion that follows the history of the school in Dessau. See the furniture, lamps, text­iles and works of visual artists. The Arena con­nects directly to the social understanding of his­toric Bau­haus as a collective community. An Open Stage as platform for contemporary and temporary exhibitions on the ground floor.

For the school's 100th anniversary year in 2019, art and design museums and galleries around the world have hosted, and will host events. The Moscow, Sao Paulo, Munster, New Delhi, Berlin, Gera, Rotterdam, London, Essen, Tel Aviv and Chicago exhibitions have already ended.

Note the following important exhibitions and conferences that will be continuing into 2020 and beyond:

April–Oct 2019 In Herzogliches Museum in Gotha Germany, the exhib­it­­ion focused on the life and work of Oskar Schlemmer: Bauhaus and the Path to Modernity, famous for his multi-disciplinary work as a painter, graphic artist, sculptor, stage designer and muralist.

March 2019–Jan 2020 Centred around his Haus Schulenburg in Gera Germany, this exhibition explores the life and work of modernist architect and artist Henry van de Velde. It also features his neo-impressionist paintings and book designs.

April 2019–March 2024 The Neues Museum in Weimar is celebrating the legacy of the school with the early works of modernist Weimar art, and its relat­ion­ship to the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. See Van de Velde, Nietzsche and Modernism.

Sept-Oct 2019 Operating over 3 consecutive weeks in three different cities (Berlin, Dessau and Weimar), the Triennale der Moderne has built a network of modernism.

Architect William Lescaze
High Cross House, Devon, 1932
RIBA Collections

Architect Marcel Breuer  
Sea Lane House, West Sussex, 1936-7
The Modern House

This exhibition highlights include:
A] Drawings and plans by the partnership of Walter Gropius and Maxwell Fry, including the unbuilt Isokon 3 building;
B] Unseen illustrations, sketches and personal photography from the archive of Leslie Martin;
C] Furniture & interiors by Marcel Breuer & Wells Coates;
D] Photographs by ex-Bauhaus student Edith Tudor-Hart;
E] Works by Elizabeth Denby, Sadie Speight, Margaret Blanco-White, Norah Aiton & Betty Scott, important female architects engaged with modernist avant-garde ideals.
F] Archival 1930s films incl László Moholy-Nagy; and
G] Personal correspondence and ephemera that tracked the personal lives of the key protagonists

Oct 2019–Feb 2020 The Royal Institute of British Architects/RIBA in Lon­don explores the development of British modernist architecture via the Bau­haus movement. The exhibition foc­uses on 3 notable Bau­haus­ers: Wal­t­er Gropius, Marcel Breuer and László Moholy-Nagy, and their impact on Britain. In 1936 Breuer left Germany for England and associated with British architect FRS Yorke, which led him to some design motifs he later used.

Enjoy the article “Bauhaus exhibitions in 2019 celebrating the school’s centenary”.


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