Gropius(2) - I926 Walter Gropius Principles of Bauhaus...

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Unformatted text preview: I926 Walter Gropius: Principles of Bauhaus production [Dessau] (excerpt) In September l922 Feininger asked in Weimar: 'Why and how this voluntty submission to the tyranny of van Doesburg and the complete realcitnncn towards all measures originating from the Bauhausi' He munt by this the eflects of the 'rival courses' given by van Doesburg in Weimar. 'llDoesburg were a teacher at the Bauhaus he would be . . . rather useful to the Whole enterprise.’ The fascination of De Stijl ideas not only captured the students. is also influenced the Bauhaus teachers. As early as i913 (in a lettero'S October Feininger noted how Gropius's attitude to handich and industrial products was changing. in I925, with the transfer to Dessau. this processwas complete. The Bauhaus wants to serve in the development of present-day housing. fro the simplest household appliances to the finished dwelling. In the conviction that household appliances and furnishings must i rationally related to each other, the Bauhaus is seeking - by systermt practical and theoretical research in the formal, technical and econont fields - to derive the design of an object from its natural functions an relationships. Modern man. who no longer dresses in historiml garments but wear modern clothes. also needs a modern home appropriate to him and his tins equipped with all the modern devices of daily use. An object is defined by its nature. in order. then, to design it to functio correctly - a container. a chair, or a house - one must first of all study it nature; for it must serve its purpose perfectly, that is. it must fulfil its functic usefully, be durable, economical and ‘beautii'ul'. This research into the actor of objects leads to the conclusion that by resolute consideration of modes” production methods. constructions. and materials, forms will evolve that as often unusual and surprising. since they deviate from the convention] (cos; sider, for example, the changes in the design of heating and fighting It is only through constant contact with newly evolving techniques. with tie discovery of new materials and with new ways of putting things Wiser, the the creative individual can learn to bring the design of objects into a living relationship with tradition and from that point to develop a new mime toward design, which is: a resolute afirmation of the living environment of machines and vehiclm; the organic design of things based on their own present-day laws, withers" romantic gloss and wasteful frivolity; the limitation to characteristic. primary forms and colours, readily to everyone; simplicity in multiplicity, economical utilization of space, material, time, amz money. 9': The creation of standard types for all practical commodities of everyday use is a social necessity. On the whole, the necessities of life are the same for the majority of people. The home and its furnishings are mass consumer goods, and their design is more a matter of reason than a matter of passion. The machine - capable of producing standardized products — is an effective device, which, by means of mechanical aids — steam and electricity - can free the individual from working manually for the satisfaction of his daily needs and can provide him with mass- produced products that are cheaper and better than those manufactured by hand. There is no danger that standardization will force a choice upon the individual, since, due to natural competition. the number of available types of each object will always be ample to provide the individual with a choice of design that suits him best. The Bauhaus workshops are essentially laboratories in which prototypes of products suitable for mass production and typical of our time are carefully developed and constantly improved. In these laboratories the Bauhaus wants to train a new kind of collaborator for industry and the crafts, who has an equal command of both technology and form. To reach the objective of creating a set of standard prototypes which meet all the demands of economy, technology and form. requires the selection of the best. most versatile, and most thoroughly educated men who are well grounded in workshop experience and who are imbued with an exact know- ledge of the design elements of form and mechanics and their underlying laws. The Bauhaus represents the opinion that the contrast between industry and the crafts is much less marked by the difference in the tools they use than by the division of labour in industry and the unity of the work in the crafts. But the two are constantly getting closer to each other. The crafts of the past have changed, and future crafts will be merged in a new productive unity in which they will carry out the experimental work for industrial production. Specula- tive experiments in laboratory workshops will yield models and prototypes for productive implementation in factories. The prototypes that have been completed in the Bauhaus workshops are being reproduced by outside firms with whom the workshops are closely related. The production of the Bauhaus thus does not represent any kind of com- petition for either industry or crafts but rather provides them with impetus for their development. The Bauhaus does this by bringing creatively talented people with ample practical experience into the actual course of p:oduction, to take over the preparatory work for production, from industry and the crafts. The products reproduced from prototypes that have been developed by the Bauhaus can be offered at a reasonable price only by utilization of all the modern, economical methods of standardization (mass production by industry) and by large-scale sales. The dangers of a decline in the quality of the product by comparison to the prototype, in regard to quality of material 96 5 i and workmanship, as a result of mechanical reproduction will be countered by all available means. The Bauhaus fights against the cheap substitute, in- ferior workmanship and the dilettantism of the handicrafts, for a new stan- dard of quality work. ...
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This note was uploaded on 07/27/2010 for the course ARCH 4140 taught by Professor Mical during the Spring '10 term at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

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Gropius(2) - I926 Walter Gropius Principles of Bauhaus...

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