It was in Dessau that the Bauhaus reached its peak of influence; the school had constructed a house, forged numerous ties to industry and designed experimental residential and public buildings. The Bauhaus Dessau aspired to establish an “industrial culture of practical life” (Ernst Kallaí) and played a decisive role in making Bauhaus products a component of contemporary lifestyle – from typefaces to furniture, lamps to textiles, wallpaper to architecture. Like no other cultural phenomenon before it, the innovative designs of the Bauhaus have become an integral part of everyday life in the 21st century. These are now so familiar to us that it is easy to forget the adverse conditions, crises and headwinds the pioneering school had to withstand in order to survive.
Based on original furniture, items of daily life, photos, design drafts and works of fine art, the exhibition “Bauhaus Laboratory” sheds light on the day-to-day learning and teaching activities at the Bauhaus Dessau with respect to creative design, industrial prototypes, artistic experimentation, economic demands, community and master craftsmanship. Divided in theme-based chapters, the exhibition examines how teaching, design and construction served to influence, improve and shape society.
The exhibition is based on the extensive collection of the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation which has steadily expanded since 1976. The project is supplemented by three temporary installations which will provide fresh insights to the exhibition on a regular basis.