Kurt Schwerdtfeger, Reflecting Color-Light-Play, 1922 | Reconstructed apparatus 2016, detail | Courtesy Microscope Gallery & Kurt Schwerdtfeger Estate
Josef Albers | Black Mountain College student in costume for Valentine’s Day Ball, 1940, Detail | © The Josef and Anni Albers Foundation / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018
University of Ife in Ile-Ife, Nigeria | Architects: Arieh Sharon, Eldar Sharon | Photo: © Arieh Sharon digital archive
The Otolith Group. O Horizon, 2018, film still | Courtesy and copyright the artists
bauhaus imaginista narrates the international histories of the Bauhaus. Since its foundation in 1919, the school was in contact with other avant-garde movements worldwide. bauhaus imaginista proposes a rereading of the Bauhaus as a cosmopolitan project with global resonances: A major exhibition and two conferences trace transnational relations, correspondences, and narratives of migration, going beyond the years the Bauhaus was active as a school (until 1933). For the first time, the project tracks the translation of Bauhaus concepts into different political and geographical contexts.
The title bauhaus imaginista hints at the imaginative possibilities which were opened up by the Bauhaus, and the multilayered interpretations that the term still denotes today. Between archival findings and contemporary contributions, the project translates the historical perspective into a set of contemporary questions: How, in the spirit of the Bauhaus, might culture be reimagined as a social project today? What kinds of institutions would such a project need? And in what ways does the Bauhaus still stimulate visionary practices and discourses today?
The exhibition places the Bauhaus in context with like-minded schools in other parts of the world. It reflects the artistic exploration of craft techniques, materials, and practices; examines how Bauhaus concepts on socially integrated design were transformed, adjusted, and challenged; and uncovers how the innovative use of media at the Bauhaus influences art and pop culture even today.
Since March 2018, exhibitions, symposia, and workshops in Rabat, Hangzhou, New York, Kyoto, and Tokyo, Moscow, Sao Paulo, Lagos, and Delhi have been realized in collaboration with the Goethe-Institutes and local partners. Now bauhaus imaginista culminates with an expanded overview at HKW.
Curated by Marion von Osten and Grant Watson in collaboration with a team of international researchers and artists. Curatorial Statement
With works by Anni Albers, Gertrud Arndt, Kader Attia, Lena Bergner, Nandalal Bose, Ahmed Cherkaoui, Alice Creischer, Zvi Efrat, Luca Frei, Walter Gropius, Doreen Mende, Hannes Meyer, Takehiko Mizutani, László Moholy-Nagy, Wendelien van Oldenborgh, Hélio Oiticica, The Otolith Group, Lygia Pape, Paulo Tavares, Iwao Yamawaki, and many more
A collaboration between the Bauhaus Cooperation Berlin Dessau Weimar, the Goethe-Institut and HKW
Part of 100 Years of Now