Bauhaus was the bedrock to what the world sees today as revolutionary. It was one of the first proper design schools and the first to set out and prove that functional need not be boring. Bauhaus was the epicentre of creativity, innovation and technology in the early 1900s – the Silicon Valley of that era. Where others see as unconventional, the disciples of Bauhaus have created some of the most iconic contemporary objects such as nesting tables, table lamps, Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona chair and Bauhaus doorknobs by Walter Gropius, whose design DNA is prevalent in everyday things like the iPhone.
Founded by Gropius in Weimar, Germany back in 1919, the Bauhaus style played the most prominent role in shaping the foundation of Modernist architecture, art and design. Bauhaus, which was first initiated as a school soon became an important cultural experimentation following Germany’s defeat in WWI – there was a desperate need rebuild the city and the architects find the need to focus on form and function. They needed a new template for buildings and more.
The movement revolutionised the practices of artists, artisans and architects in the short 14 years before Adolf Hitler ran it out of Germany – sending prominent Bauhaus supporters including its founder Gropius, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Bauhaus furniture master Marcel Breuer into exile abroad to ‘spread’ the school’s ideas around the world.
The forefathers of Bauhaus also drove the subsequent developments in industrial design, interior design, graphic design and typography. But its contribution to the facets of architecture is immense. The Bauhaus period, also known as the International Style, pretty much shaped modern and contemporary architecture we see in major metropolitan cities. This period, defined by the absence of ornamentation, open and airy spatial quality, a heavy focus on the use of glass and metal, as well as its rectilinear forms (flat roofs), has given buildings we see today its shape and allows the opportunity to build higher – skyscrapers to say the least.
As Bauhaus, the most influential design style of the 20th century marks its 100th year; its legacy lives on across the globe through buildings that bear its significant characteristics still being preserved up to this day. Here are the best places around the world to see the Bauhaus style in 2019, its centenary year.