Happy Birthday Walter Gropius

  • 18 May 2014
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  • Architecture News
Gropius and Seidler by Dupain 1954; Courtesy of Wikipedia Commons

On May 18th, we celebrate what would have been the 131st birthday of one of the most highly regarded modern architects of the 20th century, . Gropius was the founder of the Bauhaus, the German “School of Building” that embraced elements of art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, and typography in its design, development and production (learn more in our infographic here).

The existed in the years between both World Wars, greatly influencing the current of modern art and architecture. Like many modernists of the period, Gropius was interested in the mechanization of work and the utilitarianism of newly developed factories. He and Adolf Meyer designed the Fagus-Werk factory, a glass and steel cubic building that is thought to be the pioneering work of the style of modern architecture. The Bauhaus in Dessau was designed in 1925 by Gropius, who distilled his teachings into  architectural elements of the building.

Bauhaus, 1925 / Walter Gropius; © Thomas Lewandovski

Gropius also contributed with published writings, discussing the Bauhaus Manifesto, the role of the artist and the artist’s relationship to his or her work.  After immigrating to the United States, Gropius continued his teachings and exploring the Bauhaus ideal. While teaching at Harvard University, he lived with his family in the self-designed Gropius House.

Bauhaus, 1925 / Walter Gropius; © Thomas Lewandovski

Bauhaus rose in popularity with an exhibition, organized by Gropius, at the Museum of Modern Art. By the time Gropius died in 1969, his ideas on architecture and the Bauhaus itself had become a staple of modernist architecture.

Can’t get enough Bauhaus? Check out our awesome infographic and this fun, short video explaining the movement in under 3 minutes (plus, it’s narrated by Ewan McGregor).

Cite: Vinnitskaya, Irina. "Happy Birthday Walter Gropius" 18 May 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed 20 Apr 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=375067>