Dishcloth Bauhaus Pink RedBauhaus is perhaps the best known cultural export product of 20th century Germany. Yet, this art place, founded by Walter Gropius in Weimar was more than a place for training architects or artists. Since its inception, but at the latest since the Bauhaus had given itself its written agenda, the school had evolved into a Gesamtkunstwerk where all kinds of arts, crafts and workmanship has been brought together, art, graphic, interior and industrial designs, typography, but also theatre and stage graphics, painting, furniture, household goods, stained glass and experimental film, photography, music and dance, imitating the medieval guilds. Until today, there is nothing comparable in the world of arts, design and architecture.
The make up of the department - people's views
As important as locations are the people who drove the Bauhaus and its departments. Having moved away from Expressionism, Gropius had adopted to work on the principles of the Arts and Crafts Movement, yet soon the power of Constructivist ideas were felt. This stage was initiated when the color specialist Johannes Itten was replaced by the Constructivist Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. Yet, not all had been fixed on constructivism, but independent creative minds like Paul Klee, Vasily Kandinsky (1866–1944), Josef Albers and Lyonel Feininger counted amongst the teachers of this place who contributed to Gropius and the manifesto. Names became brands in their own rights, such as Herbert Bayer who invented the sans serif typefaces, Gunta Stolzl and her extraordinary weaving and fabric designs, which will be represented by our product here, and Marcel Breuer and the tubular steel chair.
What made the Bauhaus stand out and become recognisable was the usability and simple structure of the products. The idea was to combine modern styles, simplicity, transparency and workshop art that would be attractive. For this, the teachers used prefabricated constructions, huge glass curtain walls, flat roofs, open space and introduced a variety of modern synthetic materials.
The stages of the Bauhaus - Weimar, Dessau, Berlin and its dispersion
Its beginnings lie in the heart of Thuringia, the wonderful city of Weimar, famous as the place of literature, philosophy, the great Anna Amalia library and the collection of the periods of Baroque and the Enlightenment. Here, during the years 1919 to 1925 Walter Gropius forged what was to become the future brand, before the entire school, now already well known and established moved to Dessau. For Dessau, Gropius had planned the new building to house all members and departments. Many features of this building later became hallmarks of modernist architecture, something that can still be seen and felt when entering the renovated school building today. What appears first is its clear facade line and the rows of windows, the steel-frame construction, and the asymmetrical, pinwheel plan. To maximise efficiency and create a spatial logic, the studios, classrooms, and administrative spaces had been planned according to a strict rational plan.
At Dessau, the entity operated in 1925 to 1932, before it moved to Berlin where it opened its doors from 1932 to 1933. As directors served first Walter Gropius in 1919 to 1928, then Hannes Meyer in 1928 to 1930 and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in 1930 until 1933. Because of the change of the political situation in Germany when the Nazis having taken over the Government, the school was forced to close down, in retrospection, perhaps the strongest support for the spread of the brand despite the hardship that one cannot forget and the terrible situation it created for students and staff.
With the various moves in location and leadership, content, teaching, styles, technique, instructors, and politics developed. While, for example the lucrative pottery shop was discontinued after the move from Weimar to Dessau, and with Mies van der Rohe the ownership was turned private at the exclusion of all those who supported the former director Hannes Meyer. As radical as the objectives were, so radical were directors, staff and students.
Part of the plan was to teach not only theory, but to also engage students in specialised workshops, such as metalworking, cabinetmaking, weaving, pottery, typography, and wall painting. One of the core element was the move out of an ivory tower of arts and engagement with industry, the designing for mass production.
The Bauhaus Textiles
Without going into detail about the probably most popular department of the Bauhaus, the cabinetmaking workshop directed by Marcel Breuer (1924 to 1928), the textile workshop, especially under the direction of designer and weaver Gunta Stölzl (1897–1983) was another creat asset to both school and movement. Stölzl created abstract textiles, based on the colour theory studies the students had done with Klee and others but also engaged them with the technical aspects of weaving. Stolzl wanted them to experiment with unusual materials, such as cellophane, fiberglass, nylon and metal. Just like the cabinet producer, so also the fabrics from the weaving workshop were commercially successful. These were complemented by architectural wall painting, often displaying polychromatic yet abstract visual interests to the somewhat austere rooms and open spaces. Perhaps part of the cultural tradition of women being excluded from many male dominated working areas, weaving was a female domain. Famous textile designers were born there, such as Anni Albers (1899–1994), and for many years now Cornelia Krüger-Schütte has taken her inspiration there.
It is more than simply a dishcloth, but can be also used as a table cloth or a work of art to be hung like a photography or wallart at your living room. The cloth is pink-red, strong and harmonious with a typical, clear form and color scheme.
The fabric is of high quality, hand made in Germany, produced by the weaving department of the Bethel charity group. It is made of 100 % linen and strong and resistent so that it will enjoy you for many years to come.
100 % linen
measures 45 x 70 cm
Design: Cornelia Krüger-Schütte