„Die Idee der Methode“ (an idea of a method) – Walter Gropius and the Bauhaus pedagogy

Authors: Stutterheim, K.

Start date: 8 July 2016

The Bauhaus became the icon of the avant-garde and the most influential modern art school. Central for the success has been the new pedagogical concept introduced by Walter Gropius and brought to life by engaging a group of artists as teaching group and later designing the Bauhaus building for the new and most influential period in Dessau. The Bauhaus occupied a terrain that addressed a radical reform of pedagogics. It was precisely this terrain that made possible its international influence and global networks.” (Osten 2015) In my presentation I will give an overview how the “idea of a method” can be defined, what the most important aspects of this “radical reform of pedagogics” were. That is not only the invention of the “Vorkurs” initiated by Gropius and conducted by Johannes Itten and Josef Albers. The latter brought that concept to the Black Mountain College, where he taught 1933 to 1949 as well. To mention is also the importance of the stage and the “bauhaus-Feste” – Bauhaus parties, to be organised and designed by first year students. My knowledge is based in research and close cooperation with both Bauhaus-institutions (Berlin and Dessau) since the early 1990s, as well as interviews I made with former Bauhaus-students between 1992 and 1998. Thus, I will give an academic overview and include some personal statements of former students.

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