Vitra Design Museum hosts major Bauhaus retrospective
Work from Bauhaus artists and designers including Walter Gropius, Marianne Brandt and Wassily Kandinsky is on display at the Vitra Design Museum in Germany (+ slideshow).
Created as a comprehensive overview of work from the influential German art and design school, the exhibition covers a range of disciplines including design, architecture, art, film and photography.
Founded by Gropius in 1919, the Bauhaus taught Modernist principles across art, architecture, graphic design, interior design and industrial design.
Subsequent directors included architects Hannes Meyer – from 1928 to 1930 – and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who served until the school closed under pressure from the Nazi government in 1933.
The show, titled The Bauhaus #itsalldesign, is divided into four themed sections, with many of the pieces never having been exhibited before.
The opening part of the exhibition examines the historical context of the Bauhaus, while successive sections examine lesser-known design objects, and the theme of space – with a focus on the different individuals that contributed to the school's design approach.
A final section examines communication, covering typography as well as experimental film and photography.
Key pieces on display include Walter Gropius' 1919 manifesto, a Ludwig Mies van der Rohe armchair with U-shaped metal arms, and Josef Albers' 1923 Park stained glass panel.
Historic objects are contrasted by work from contemporary designers influenced by the movement, such as Konstantin Grcic's Pipe table and chair, Opendesk's Edie stool and Front Design's Sketch furniture.
Additional pieces were also commissioned for the exhibition by artists Adrian Sauer and Olaf Nicolai, and architects Philipp Oswalt and Joseph Grima – who submitted a digital "docudrama" that follows the ghost of Gropius through the universe of video game Minecraft.
A recent international competition calling for proposals for a new Bauhaus museum was jointly won by two designs – a long rectangular building with an external structure frame, and a group of colourful conjoined pods.
The exhibition opened 26 September 2015 at the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, Germany, and continues until 28 February 2016.