Visit the world's largest collection of works from the Bauhaus movement which has inspired global architecture and design since its inception in 1919.
The Bauhaus Archive will be renovated and rebuilt in the next few years. The temporary Bauhaus-Archiv/Museum für Gestaltung can be found in Knesebeckstraße 1 - 2 at the underground station Ernst-Reuter-Platz.
Since its foundation in 1919, the Bauhaus has shaped the world of architecture and design. The movement's functional designs and furniture pieces inspire worldwide. Admire the designs, drawings and watercolours of many famous masters and artists at the Bauhaus Archive. The impressive models and plans from the estates of Walter Gropius and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe in the Berlin Archives form the core of the world's largest collection of works from the Bauhaus movement.
Architecture, crafts and art in one
In 1960, the art historian and Bauhaus expert Hans Maria Wingler founds the first Bauhaus archive. The collection is initially housed in the Ernst-Ludwig-Haus, sponsored by Darmstädter Marienhöhe, but the prestige of the Bauhaus school and the collection grows so fast that it merits its own dedicated museum. Gropius, the founder of the Bauhaus collection, designs the plans, but ultimately it is not Darmstadt but Land Berlin that is ready to finance the project. After a short spell in Charlottenburg, the current building is opened in 1979 on the Landwehrkanal. The famous silhouette, with its white sawtooth roofs, has since defined the Bauhaus Archive / Museum for Design. The core of the museum is devoted to famous teachers and artists and includes many drawings and sketches, and of course furniture and consumer goods. You are aware of how strongly the institution itself is influenced by the principles of Bauhaus design. Steel tube chairs, made by Marcel Breuer, embody these concepts: simplicity, coupled with the greatest possible convenience. Your tour then takes you to the painting and graphics section, where you will find the surprisingly modern, abstract and colourful works of Paul Klee and László Moholy-Nagy. Simple textile motifs inspire these works in contrast with the pompous ornamentation of the bourgeoisie. The craftsmen are instead in the service of working people. You can see watering cans, vessels and bowls from the metal workshop that are products of these revolutionary ideas. Now for the architectural part of the exhibition, where you will discover photos, models and plans for the railway station in Dessau where Gropius first houses this comprehensive collection of artists' work.
What not to miss in the Bauhaus Archive / Museum for Design
- Products from the atelier for wall painting, including the famous Bauhaus wallpaper
- Furniture from the textile workshop such as the African chair by Gunta Stölzl and Marcel Breuer
- Pioneering photographs and advertising graphics
- The wardrobe on castors of Josef Pohl, exemplary for its simple and functional construction
- Unique metal sculptures by Moholy-Nagy
Art and culture in the area
Close to the Bauhaus Archives for Design, you will discover more contemporary art at the Gründerzeitvilla at Lützowplatz. Here there are changing exhibitions of modern painting, architecture and photography. The memorial site for the German Resistance is of great importance. In the so-called 'Bendlerblock' you can learn more about the resistance in relation to National Socialism and members of the White Rose, Georg Elser, Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg. Just around the corner, you'll find the Schwules Museum (Gay Museum), where you can learn about the history of the queer community in Berlin. There's even more modern art, design, crafts and fashion from the Middle Ages to the present day on display at the Kunstgewerbmuseum in the Kulturforum. Here you will also find several high-profile cultural institutions such as the State Library and the Neue Nationalgalerie (New National Gallery). Marvel at the history of classical music at the Musikinstrumenten Museum where you can see instruments made by legendary 17th-century instrument-maker Stradivari. Returning westwards, you'll find the Berliner Volksbankstiftung, whose rooms present 1450 works by Berlin and East German artists from the period after 1950.
Your visit to the Bauhaus Archive / Museum for Design
You can easily reach the Bauhaus Archive via public transport - just take buses 100 or M29 to the stop Lützowplatz. If arriving by car, you can use the nearby Lützow Center car park. If you have a Berlin WelcomeCard, you get a 25% discount on the entrance fee, and a Museums Pass gives you free admission. The museum is open on Mondays. On Sundays, free guided tours take place at 2 pm. For families, there are many museum-related offers: on Saturday nights, for example, there is a regular workshop for children and young people. These workshops allow the young visitors to engage playfully with Bauhaus architecture and design by making their own artworks. One Sunday every month is Family Sunday when, from 11 am to 2 pm, children and their parents can take part in creative programmes. Guided tours need to be booked for groups of 25 or more. In addition, the Bauhaus Archive / Museum of Design offers excursions to some of Berlin's pivotal architectural landmarks.
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