Edition 2

Moving Away

Marcel Breuer, Collage „ein bauhaus-film“ 
in: bauhaus. zeitschrift für gestaltung, Nr. 1, 1926
Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin.

MP Ranjan, Bamboo Cube, n.d.
NID, FID storage + KMC Prototype.

Unknown Photographer, Photo of a Chinese woman
with tubular steel chair, ca. 1930s–40s
China Design Museum of CAA, Hangzhou.

Schweizer Staedtebauer bei den Sowjets, magazine cover
Hans Schmidt Estate, gta Archiv / eth Zürich.

Construyamos escuelas, 1947, magazine cover
Hannes Meyer Estate, Archiv der Moderne, Weimar.

Miguel Lawner, Esquema de relaciones – esquema de circulación 
published in: Edificación (1940), Miguel Lawner Archive.

Shanghai urban planning and design institute, The Explanatory Drawing
of "urban plan" made by Shanghai Urban Planning Commission Secretariat,
1940s, Private collection.

Konrad Püschel, Site plan of Hamhung, 1956
Stiftung Bauhaus Dessau.

University of Ife in Ile-Ife, Nigeria
by architects Arieh Sharon and Eldar Sharon
Arieh Sharon digital archive.

Lotte Stam-Beese, Studies for the region Rotterdam-Capelle aan den Ijssel
Het Nieuwe Instituut, © Ariane Stam.

●Edition Concept

Marcel Breuer’s collage, published in the magazine bauhaus. zeitschrift für gestaltung in 1926, propels the design of the chair into an unknown future. The Bauhaus philosophy was to invent and put into practice solutions based on progress, and, according to Breuer, adapt to a quickly changing environment. The edition Moving Away investigates how ideas about design inspired by the Bauhaus, in relation to individuals as well as the collective needs of society, evolved throughout the twentieth century. It traces Bauhaus ideas about design and architecture as they were translated, developed, adapted and renewed, including in the Soviet Union, China, Chile, India, North Korea, Hungary and Nigeria.


In each place, the design function was altered by the needs of a particular society and driven towards different ends. Moving Away explores the relationship between Bauhaus architects and the Soviet Union, part of a broader engagement by an international avant-garde, inspired by its revolutionary ideology or attracted by large-scale commissions. During the rule of Stalin, a second wave of migration of former Bauhauslers from the USSR to Latin America and Eastern Europe took place (Hungary, Mexico, Chile and later the German Democratic Republic (GDR)) where former Bauhaus architects resettled. In post-independence India, partly through an interaction with the Ulm School of Design (HfG Ulm), Bauhaus ideas can be traced in the curriculum of India’s National School of Design (NID) and the Industrial Design Centre (IDC). In the subcontinent, design was promoted through government policy and five-year plans. It was utilized as a development tool and catalyst for economic growth, intended to serve the needs of a non-affluent, mostly rural population, with designers often working with traditions and technical know-how built up over millennia. Through these and other examples, including a Bauhaus design reception in China, Moving Away questions the universal application of design solutions, but more importantly pinpoints its ideological implications as well as its relation to the politics of governmentality.


Through this historical lens, Moving Away enables a critical reflection on design today in a globalized world, both as a tool for the state and for economic forces, as well as for grassroots interventions into social processes.

●Related Articles
After the Ball — Hannes Meyer presenting the Bauhaus in Moscow

Hannes Meyer arrived in the USSR just a couple of months after being dismissed from his position as Bauhaus director in October 1930. These months were filled with attempts by Meyer and his supporters to protest this decision through all possible means: media campaigns, open letters, student demonstration and court trials. After arriving in Moscow, Meyer carried on the fight against his unfair dismissal. → more

Meyer’s Russia, or the Land that never was

It is quite hard to know where to start with Hannes Meyer in Moscow. It’s hard because, while there is plenty of documentation on him and his team in the Bauhaus Brigade—as well as other Western designers and architects (of these, Ernst May is at least as significant as Meyer, as is the Dutch designer Mart Stam, and each went on to produce more substantial work than Meyer after their respective Russian episodes)—the legacy of his work there presents certain difficulties in evaluating. → more

From Recognition to Rejection — Hannes Meyer and the Reception of the Bauhaus in the Soviet Union

The history of the Stalinist critique of the Bauhaus and Hannes Meyer has two chapters. The first chapter spans the time from 1929 to the Architects’ Congress in the Soviet Union in 1937; the second consists in the condemnation of the Bauhaus in the GDR that took place on the trip by East German architects to Moscow in spring of 1950. This text tells the story of the first chapter. → more

The “School in the Woods” as a Socio-pedagogical Ideal — Functional Analyses and Photographs by Peterhans

The building theory classes at the Bauhaus focused on imparting a functional understanding of architecture. Building had become a science. As a result, the ADGB Trade Union School was designed logically from the inside out. Walter Peterhans’ photographs of the school images illustrate both the architect’s intentions for the building and the environmental studies conducted by Bauhaus students. → more

The Moscow Bauhaus exhibition catalogue (1931)

When Hannes Meyer had emigrated to the Soviet Union in 1930, one of the first things he did was organizing an exhibition about "his" Bauhaus. As early as in February 1931 Meyer had the exhibition “Bauhaus Dessau. Period of Hannes Meyer’s directorship. 1928-1930” already ready to receive the Moscow public. It was shown at the renown State Museum of New Western Art. This is the first English translation of the exhibition catalogue. → more

●Artistic Work
To Philipp Tolziner

For the exhibition bauhaus imaginista: Moving Away. The Internationalist Architect at Garage Contemporary Museum of Art, the contemporary artist Alice Creischer has been invited to respond to the personal archive of Bauhaus architect Philipp Tolziner. She produced reading of material relating to the architect’s socialist backgrounds and his work in the Soviet Union.  → more

Richard Paulick and the Remaking of a Greater Shanghai 1933–1949

The article focusses on Richard Paulick’s sixteen-year exile in Shanghai. It is an examination of the interaction between a Bauhaus socialist and a Far East port city in its rush to modernize at the midpoint of the twentieth century. → more

The “Hungarian Bauhaus” — Sándor Bortnyik’s Bauhaus-inspired Budapest School Műhely 1928–1938

One of the many Hungarians associated with the Bauhaus, painter and graphic designer Sándor Bortnyik (1893-1976) opened his art and design school, Műhely, in Budapest in 1928 to bring the Bauhaus’s sprit and some of its teaching methods into Hungary. Even if Bortnyik’s school did not have the scope of the Bauhaus, it was an efficient experiment in an independent form of institutionalized education in the field of modern graphic design and typography. → more

The Spread of the Bauhaus in China

As early as the end of the 19th century up to the beginning of the 20th century, which is to say before the founding of the Bauhaus and after China’s forced opening through war to the outside world, China had already been witness to various experiments in modernization. Such experiments contributed to the laying down of a foundational mindset necessary for the acceptance of the Bauhaus in China’s traditional culture. → more

Modern Vernacular — Walter Gropius and Chinese Architecture

This essay explores the connection between Walter Gropius and I. M. Pei, as well as the influence of the one on the other. After completing his studies, I. M. Pei worked with Gropius on plans for a university in Shanghai, which he subsequently realized in Taiwan, than in association with Chang Chao-Kang and Chen Chi-Kuan. → more

Architects' Congress

The passenger ship Patris II transported the participants of the 4th International Congresses of Modern Architecture (CIAM) from Marseilles to Athens and back. Bauhaus teacher Moholy-Nagy, travelling as a “friend of the new building movement” produced this half-hour soundless film as a travel journal. → more

Jawaja Project — A Case study

The NID was involved in a joint venture with the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad in the adoption for development of a group of villages in Rajasthan. Could local self-reliance emerge from a process of mutual learning between communities and other groups of people? The film shows how leather work and weaving emerged as the opportunity and basis for sustained group effort. → more

Bauhausmoderne und chinesische Tradition — Franz Ehrlichs Entwurf für ein Haus des Handels in Peking (1954–1956)

In den frühen 1950er-Jahren bestanden gute diplomatische, politische und ökonomische Beziehungen zwischen der Volksrepublik China und der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik. Beide, sich als sozialistisch verstehende Staaten, waren 1949 gegründet worden. In diesem Aufsatz geht es um die besondere Beziehung zur chinesischen Architektur, Kunst und Gestaltung, die Franz Ehrlich entwickelte. → more

●Research Archive
From an 'Alien, Hostile Phenomenon' to the 'Poetry of the Future'. On the Bauhaus Reception in East Germany, 1945–70
Wolfgang Thöner

from: GHI Bulletin Supplement 2.

EN Size: 651 KB
Lotte Stam-Beese. From 'Entwurfsarchitektin' to Urban-planning Architect
Hanneke Oosterhof

from: Architektúra & Urbanizmus, Vol. LI, No. 1–2, 2017, p. 94–105.

EN Size: 925 KB
Architekt und Propagandist: Zu den Vortragsreisen Hannes Meyers nach Westeuropa 1931–36
Klaus-Jürgen Winkler

in: Wissenschaftliche Zeitschrift der Hochschule für Architektur und Bauwesen Weimar, 32. Jg., 1986, Reihe: A, No. 4.

DE Size: 5 MB
Dashrath Patel’s non-aligned alignments
Nancy Adajania

Courtesy of Nancy Adajania.

EN Size: 271 KB
●All Articles
Filter by Language:
  • EN
  • DE
  • RU
After the Ball — Hannes Meyer presenting the Bauhaus in Moscow EN
Meyer’s Russia, or the Land that never was EN
From Recognition to Rejection — Hannes Meyer and the Reception of the Bauhaus in the Soviet Union EN
The “School in the Woods” as a Socio-pedagogical Ideal — Functional Analyses and Photographs by Peterhans EN
Die „Schule im Walde“ als sozialpädagogisches Ideal
 — Funktionsanalysen und Peterhans-Fotos DE
The Moscow Bauhaus exhibition catalogue (1931) EN
To Philipp Tolziner EN
Для Филиппа Тольцинера RU
Richard Paulick and the Remaking of a Greater Shanghai 1933–1949 EN
The “Hungarian Bauhaus” — Sándor Bortnyik’s Bauhaus-inspired Budapest School Műhely 1928–1938 EN
The Spread of the Bauhaus in China EN
Modern Vernacular — Walter Gropius and Chinese Architecture EN
Walter Gropius und die chinesische Architektur DE
Architects' Congress EN
Jawaja Project — A Case study EN
Bauhausmoderne und chinesische Tradition — Franz Ehrlichs Entwurf für ein Haus des Handels in Peking (1954–1956) DE