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  7. AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius

AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius

AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius
AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius, © Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

© Thomas Lewandovski © Thomas Lewandovski © Thomas Lewandovski © Thomas Lewandovski +29

From the architect. Interested in creating a new form of design found at the intersection of architecture, art, industrial design, typography, graphic design, and interior design, Walter Gropius was inspired to create an institution known as the Bauhaus at Dessau, with an emerging style that would forever influence architecture.

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

Initially a school in Weimar, growing political resentment forced the move to Dessau. Gropius took this as an opportunity to build a school that reflected his hopes for the education that would be had within it's walls. The style of the Dessau facilities hints at the more futuristic style of Gropius in 1914, also showing similarities to the International style more than the Neo-classic style.

Courtesy of Dennis Sharp
Courtesy of Dennis Sharp

The extensive facilities in the plans of the Bauhaus at Dessau include spaces for teaching, housing for students and faculty members, an auditorium and offices, which were fused together in a pinwheel configuration. From the aerial view, this layout hints at the form of airplane propellers, which were largely manufactured in the surrounding areas of Dessau.

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

The building is comprised of three wings all connected by bridges. The school and workshop spaces are associated through a large two-story bridge, which creates the roof of the administration located on the underside of the bridge. 

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

The housing units and school building are connected through a wing to create easy access to the assembly hall and dining rooms. The educational wing contains administration and classrooms, staff room, library, physics laboratory, model rooms, fully finished basement, raised ground-floor and two upper floors.

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

As a practiced architect, Gropius was interested in including structural and technological advancements as he designed this revolutionary school for architecture and design students.  

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

Some of the various progressions include a window glazing, a skeleton of reinforced concrete and brickwork, mushroom-like ceilings of the lower level, and roofs covered with asphalt tiles that were meant to be walked on. The total area for construction of the Dessau Bauhaus was 113,400 sq ft, the building itself containing approximately 250,600 sq ft. The total cost was around 902,500 marks, or 27.8 mars per cubic m of space.

© Gili Merin
© Gili Merin

It's size "belied the enormous symbolic significance it was to gain as its national and international reputation grew as an experimental and commercial laboratory for design after 1927 as a hotbed of architecture and urban design."

© Gili Merin
© Gili Merin

To incorporate the students of the Bauhaus, the interior decoration of the entire building was done by the wall painting workshop, the lighting fixtures by the metal workshop, and the lettering by the print shop.  With the Bauhaus building, Gropius thoughtfully laid out his notion of the building as a 'total work' of compositional architecture.

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

The huge curtain window facade of the workshop building became an integral part of the building's design. Hoping to create transparency, the wall emphasized the 'mechanical' and open spatial nature of the new architecture. 

© Thomas Lewandovski
© Thomas Lewandovski

These vast windows enabled sunlight to pour in throughout the day, although creating a negative effect on warmer summer days. In order to preserve the curtain wall as one expanse, the load bearing columns were recessed back from the main walls.

Courtesy of Dennis Sharp
Courtesy of Dennis Sharp

"Like De Stijl painting, in a sense the Bauhaus was composed of basically related functional elements that produced a cohesive interrelated asymmetric whole."

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address. Cite: Megan Sveiven. "AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius" 10 Nov 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <http://www.archdaily.com/87728/ad-classics-dessau-bauhaus-walter-gropius/>
Read comments

46 Comments

Mateo Martinez · May 02, 2013

Can someone tell me where can I find these plans, sections and elevations, including the ones missing. I need them the aproximate size found in this page.

Mateo Martinez · May 02, 2013

Can someone tell me where can I get this plans, sections and elevations. I need images the same size found in this page.

Tim · February 16, 2013

Is it possible to find some drawings (blueprint) of the curtain window facade? I don't know where to find them.

christianharrup.com · April 14, 2012

Doesn&#39t Walter Gropius&#39s Bauhaus look great http://t.co/J6Ei9o60

Graham Cowen · November 03, 2011

Designers&#39 mecca ... Bauhaus Dessau. http://t.co/MOQ2U2pP @plethoraapp

Michael Shapiro · February 13, 2011

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bauhauscenter · February 13, 2011

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Jose Hollmann · January 22, 2011

Nice web page!!!

wanlinksniper · November 14, 2010

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CVD Arquitectura · November 14, 2010

Vale la pena verlo.... un diseño del año 1914 http://fb.me/AyenK1Ud

Hashzeta · November 13, 2010

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fyer · November 13, 2010

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Daniel Carrapa · November 12, 2010

Archdaily takes a look at Walter Gropius timeless design for the Bauhaus at Dessau. http://bit.ly/arlatj

Edgard Georges · November 12, 2010

AD Classics: Dessau Bauhaus / Walter Gropius | ArchDaily: http://bit.ly/9CmyHN

Greening Modernism · November 12, 2010

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Projecta UFBA · November 12, 2010

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Fabitto · November 12, 2010

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Jose Ignacio Lee · November 12, 2010

Edificio de la Bauhaus en Dessau de Walter Gropius. Fotos, plantas, elevaciones y cortes. http://bit.ly/anpeeL #arquitectura #siglo XX

Paulyna Lara · November 12, 2010

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arquiRED Mexico · November 12, 2010

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Rohini Kulkarni · November 12, 2010

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Orgone Design · November 12, 2010

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Gosia Kung, AIA · November 11, 2010

Architecture of Bauhaus - one of the biggest inspirations in my life http://fb.me/MaHNlMef

Kris · November 11, 2010

You can keep your cheap parametric exercises and wannabe-Zaha bastardizations, this 85 year old building still blows them out of the water in form, function, material, theory, construction....

Architect · November 11, 2010

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Cauê Costa · November 11, 2010

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Gabriel Giambastiani · November 11, 2010

84 anos e segue relevante: http://bit.ly/9c98iQ

Luciana Galvão · November 11, 2010

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ArchiCAD · November 11, 2010

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Pere Serra · November 11, 2010

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Lance Sy · November 11, 2010

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spectives#design · November 11, 2010

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DEZIGN · November 11, 2010

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Barry Maguire · November 11, 2010

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Luiz Dumont · November 11, 2010

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Andres Salinas · November 11, 2010

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Fabrica3 · November 11, 2010

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Peter Newton · November 11, 2010

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Erik Joya · November 11, 2010

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GR2TF · November 11, 2010

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Architecture+Molding · November 11, 2010

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thiago · November 11, 2010

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HyungNam KIM · November 11, 2010
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