Loading
Bloomsbury Design Library Lesson Plans

Subjects

Content Type:

Lesson plan

Place:

Germany

Schools, Movements and Styles:

Bauhaus, Modernism and Design

Themes:

Education, Gender

Related Content

The Bauhaus

The Bauhaus
by Clive Edwards

Clive Edwards is Professor in Design History at Loughborough University, UK. His authored works include: Interior Design: A Critical Introduction (Bloomsbury 2010), Encyclopedia of Furnishing Textiles, Floorcoverings and Home Furnishing Practices 1200-1950 (2007); Turning Houses into Homes (2005), Encyclopaedia of Furniture Materials Trades and Techniques (2000), Twentieth Century Furniture, its materials, manufacture and markets (1994), and Victorian Furniture, Technology and Design (1993). He has also contributed a number of articles to the Encyclopedia of Interior Design (1997), and has published a number of scholarly articles and essays in edited works. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

Search for publications
DOI: 10.5040/9781350097964.002

  • Publisher:
    Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Identifier:
    b-9781350097964-002
Collapse All Sections

Introduction

This unit introduces the key concepts and individuals in the Bauhaus project. The emphasis is on the teaching practices and outcomes in terms of products, approaches to teaching, and the impact the Bauhaus made internationally.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  • Provide an overview of the development of the Bauhaus school, the impact it had on developing approaches to design, and its influence on Modernist design worldwide.

  • Understand the forces that shaped the aspirations of the Bauhaus and how they were implemented both locally and worldwide.

  • Consider how influential the Bauhaus was in terms of products, architectural and art works, teaching approaches, and theories of design.

Unit Outline

This unit of five lessons is intended for students at first-year undergraduate level and above. Assigned readings and discussion questions are included to provide an understanding of the ideas to be discussed in class.

Lesson 1

Overview

Texts to be read before the lesson

Hoiman, S., and K. Schreiter. 2016. “Bauhaus (1919–33).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B024

The section “Bauhaus in Weimar” and “Bauhaus in Dessau Berlin” in Margolin, V. 2015. “Weimar Germany 1918–1933.” In World History of Design: World War I to World War II, 33–72. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474246217.ch-002

Discussion questions

  • What was the overriding goal of the “great building” and to what extent did the Bauhaus achieve this aim?

  • To what extent (and why) did the Bauhaus attempt to develop a path toward a new social utopia?

  • Is there an irony in the original desire of the Bauhaus for “unity in design” and the modern fetish for engaging with specific Bauhaus products as often-unconnected examples of good form?

Homework

Discuss the principle of the Gesamtkunstwerk in Bauhaus theory and practice in an illustrated paper (350 words).

Lesson 2

Approaches to Design

Texts to be read before the lesson

Berk, K. 2016. “Gestaltung.” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 88–89. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-G025

Gropius, W. 2016. “Bauhaus Dessau: Principles of Bauhaus Production.” In Design: Critical and Primary Sources: Design Reform, Modernism, and Modernization, edited by D. Huppatz, 88–90. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474282857.0015

Gropius, W. 2016. “The Theory and Organization of the Bauhaus.” In Design: Critical and Primary Sources: Design Reform, Modernism, and Modernization, edited by D. Huppatz, 83–87. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474282857.0014

Discussion questions

  • How did Gropius consider the relation between the workshops of the Bauhaus and industrial business? See http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474282857.0015

  • What were the influences of art and artistic practice on the Bauhaus approach to design?

  • What were the similarities and differences between the Russian Vkhutemas and the Bauhaus? (see Cubbin, T. 2016). “Vkhutemas.” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 396. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596154-BED-V031

Homework

Write a short analysis that explores the theoretical and the practical relationship between crafts and industry in the Bauhaus 1919–33.

Lesson 3

Bauhaus Staff

Texts to be read before the lesson

Cubbin, T. 2016. “Moholy-Nagy, László (1895–1946).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 401–403. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-M080

Dick, E. 2016. “Stölzl, Gunta (1897–1983).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 268–269. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596154-BED-S117

Pfützner, K. 2016. “Breuer, Marcel (1902–81).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B093

Toplis, A. 2016. “Albers, Anni (1899–1994).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-A033

Zaidan, S. 2016. “Bayer, Herbert (1900–85).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 5, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B027

Discussion questions

  • Consider the works of any three of the above and discuss:

    • their contributions to design practice

    • their contributions to design education

  • Consider the place of heroes in design history.

Homework

Gropius stated there was no difference between the sexes in the Bauhaus. Write a short comparative analysis of the reception and role of men and women staff and students at the Bauhaus (350 words).

Lesson 4

Products and Workshops

Texts to be read before the lesson

Hoiman, S., and K. Schreiter. 2016. “Bauhaus (1919–33).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B024

Section on “Workshops” and “Products”

Discussion questions

Homework

Write a short analytical essay (350 words) on either the typography or metalworking workshops to explore their contribution to design practice in 1919–33 and beyond.

Lesson 5

Legacy

Texts to be read before the lesson

Hoiman, S., and K. Schreiter. 2016. “Bauhaus (1919–33).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B024

Section on “Legacy”

Cesare, C. 2016. “Institute of Design (Chicago) (1939–).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 201–202. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-I044

Schreiter, K. 2016. “Hochschule für Gestaltung Ulm (1953–68).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 156–157. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-H048

Discussion questions

  • What is the Bauhaus legacy for our present generation of students?

  • Are Bauhaus methodologies and teaching patterns irrelevant to the contemporary context?

Homework

Read the text: Díaz, E. 2017. “The Architectonics of Perception: Xanti Schawinsky at Black Mountain College.” In Émigré Cultures in Design and Architecture, edited by A.J. Clarke & E. Shapira, 191–202. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474275637.ch-012

Discuss the role of émigré Bauhaus faculty in spreading the school’s principles abroad.

Further Reading

EBooks in the Bloomsbury Design Library

Díaz, E. 2017. “The Architectonics of Perception: Xanti Schawinsky at Black Mountain College.” In Émigré Cultures in Design and Architecture, edited by A.J. Clarke and E. Shapira, 191–202. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474275637.ch-012

Gropius, W. 2016. “Bauhaus Dessau: Principles of Bauhaus Production.” In Design: Critical and Primary Sources: Design Reform, Modernism, and Modernization, edited by D. Huppatz, 88–90. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474282857.0015

Gropius, W. 2016. “The Theory and Organization of the Bauhaus.” In Design: Critical and Primary Sources: Design Reform, Modernism, and Modernization, edited by D. Huppatz, 83–87. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474282857.0014

Margolin, V. 2015. “Weimar Germany 1918–1933.” In World History of Design: World War I to World War II, 33–72. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474246217.ch-002

Shapira, Elana and Alison J. Clarke. 2017. “Introduction—Émigré Cultures and New Design Dimensions.” In Émigré Cultures in Design and Architecture, edited by A.J. Clarke and E. Shapira, 1–28. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474275637.ch-001

Vallye, A. 2017. “György Kepes’s ‘Universities of Vision’: From Education in Design to Design as Education of the Mind.” In Émigré Cultures in Design and Architecture, edited by A.J. Clarke and E. Shapira, 175–191. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781474275637.ch-011

Articles in the Bloomsbury Design Library

Aynsley, J. 2016. “German Design.” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 80–86. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-G022

Cubbin, T. 2016. “Moholy-Nagy, László (1895–1946).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 401–403. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-M080

Dick, E. 2016. “Stölzl, Gunta (1897–1983).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 268–269. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596154-BED-S117

Edwards, C. 2016. “Brandt, Marianne (1893–1983).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B087

Edwards, C. 2016. “Gropius, Walter (1883–1969).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 119–120. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-G062

Edwards, C. 2016. “Itten, Johannes (1888–1967).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 237. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-I085b

Edwards, C. 2016. “Koch-Otte Benita (1892–1976).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 288–289. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-K032d

Edwards, C. 2016. “Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig (1886–1969).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 377–378. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-M053

Grönert, S. 2016. “Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 451–452. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-N029

Hartnett, J.P. 2016. “Albers, Josef (1888–1976).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-A034

Kalantidou, E. 2016. “Gestalt.” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 87–88. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-G024

Pfützner, K. 2016. “Breuer, Marcel (1902–81).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B093

Pfützner, K. 2016. “Wagenfeld, Wilhelm (1900–1990).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 401–403. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596154-BED-V038a

Robey, E. 2016. “Modernism and Design.” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 386–393. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-M075

Schreiter, K. 2016. “Bauhaus-Archiv/Museum Für Gestaltung (Bauhaus Archive and Museum), Berlin (1960–) and Bauhaus Dessau Archiv (1976–).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B023

Schreiter, K. 2016. “Hochschule für Gestaltung Ulm (1953–68).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design, 156–157. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596161-BED-H048

Toplis, A. 2016. “Albers, Anni (1899–1994).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-A033

Zaidan, S. 2016. “Bayer, Herbert (1900–85).” In The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Design. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Retrieved December 11, 2018. http://dx.doi.org/10.5040/9781472596178-BED-B027

Enrichment Materials

The literature on the Bauhaus is vast—ranging from general overviews to very specific articles on the school, its staff, its politics, its outputs, and its influence in a wide range of practices of the theoretical positions. The select following are useful.

Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin, Klassik Stiftung Weimar, and Stiftung Bauhaus Dessau, eds. 2009. Bauhaus: A Conceptual Model. Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz.

Baumhoff, Anja, and Magdalena Droste, eds. 2009. Mythos Bauhaus: Zwischen Selbsterfindung und Enthistorisierung (Myth Bauhaus: Between self-invention and de-historicization). Berlin: Reimer.

Bergdoll, Barry, and Leah Dickerman. 2009. Bauhaus 1919–1933: Workshops for Modernity. New York: Museum of Modern Art.

Fiedler, Jeannine, and Peter Feierabend. 1999. Bauhaus. Cologne: Könemann.

Herzogenrath, Wulf. 1968. 50 Years Bauhaus: German Exhibition. London: Royal Academy of Arts.

Ince, Catherine, Lydia Yee, and Juliette Desorgues. 2012. Bauhaus Art as Life [Barbican Art Gallery, London, May 3–August 12, 2012]. London: Koenig Books in association with Barbican Art Gallery.

Itten, Johannes. 2006. Design and Form: The Basic Course at the Bauhaus and Later. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Müller, Ulrike. 2009. Bauhaus Women: Art. Handicraft Design. Paris: Flammarion.

Naylor, Gillian. 1985. The Bauhaus Reassessed: Sources and Design Theory. London: Herbert Press.

Oswalt, Philipp, ed. 2009. Bauhaus Conflicts, 1919–2009: Controversies and Counterparts. Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz.

Reissinger, Elisabeth, and Michael Siebenbrodt. 2001. Bauhaus Weimar: Designs for the Future. Ostfildern-Ruit: Hatje Cantz.

Schuldenfrei, Robin. 2012. “Assimilating Unease: Moholy-Nagy and the Wartime/Postwar Bauhaus in Chicago.” In Atomic Dwelling: Anxiety, Domesticity and Postwar Architecture, edited by Robin Schuldenfrei, 87–126. London: Routledge.

Wingler, Hans. 1978. The Bauhaus. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.