100 Years of Bauhaus – The First Retrospective in 1930

Artists / Curators / Exhibition History / History / Research
Havard Society for contemporary Art - Bauhaus 1930

Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau – Retrospective exhibition at ‘The Harvard Society for Contemporary Art’, early December 1930 – January 13, 1931

100 Years of Bauhaus ‐ The First Retrospective in 1930

The centenary of the founding of the Bauhaus initiated many exhibitions, surveys, research projects and conferences not only in Europe but worldwide to review the original Bauhaus years in Weimar 1919-1924, and Dessau 1925-1931 and the echoes of these years up to the present.
All the centenary activities provide new and important insight. However, the Bauhaus was not an island nor is it thinkable without taking into account all the other important developments in the arts during the first three decades of the 20th century. See overview below.
Looking back may easily result in the conclusion that things had to happen as they happened. As always, nobody knows what the future will be and although the vision about the Bauhaus mission was an important compass, its history was not carved out of stone beforehand.

Bauhaus Building by Walter Gropius, built in 1925–26. UNESCO World Heritage. © Mewes, 2003, Wikimedia Commons

In 1923, the first Bauhaus exhibition took place in Weimar. The ‘Bauhauswoche’ (15.-19.08.1923) undertook the important task to promote the Bauhaus itself and to show the results of the artist’s work. Seven years later, the ’20e Salon des artistes décorateurs français’ (14.05.-13.07.1930), took place at the Grand Palais in Paris, one if not the capital of the arts since centuries. The ‘Section allemande’, which was directed by the ‘Deutscher Werkbund’, was organized by Walter Gropius (with contributions by László Moholy-Nagy, Marcel Breuer, and Herbert Bayer) in an own, remarkable environment. 1  It was the most important and at the same time last show during the lifetime of the Bauhaus, spanning from home furnishing items to city planning.
In a sharp contrast to Paris, at home in Dessau the dismissal of Hannes Meyer (1889-1954) on 01.08.1930, who followed Walter Gropius as director in 1928, provoked a historical caesura.
Although Mies van der Rohe became new director of the Bauhaus in Dessau, with the dismissal of Meyer in August 1930 the future and mission of the Bauhaus suddenly became unclear. It survived another three years until its closure in Berlin in 1933.

The First Bauhaus Retrospective in December 1930

Despite this tragedy, for some the Bauhaus had already found its place in history of art and its role in modern life. It seemed to be a sound and reasonable way out of the tumult of the past two decades.
The first Bauhaus retrospective in December 1930 in Cambridge (MA) was organized to defend the historical role, and its essential meaning for future development. It took place from early December 1930 until January 13, 1931 at the artist-info.com Blog post Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, entitled ‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’.2 The exhibition traveled after Cambridge to the John Becker Gallery, New York (20.01.-10.02.1931), thereafter to The Arts Club of Chicago , then entitled ‘Bauhaus, Dessau, Germany’, (13.-28.03.1931).

The Harvard Society for Contemporary Art

The Harvard Society for Contemporary Art – HSfCA, was an avant-garde art gallery run by three students, from 1929-1932: Lincoln Kirstein (1907–1996), John Walker III (1906–1995), and Edward M. M. Warburg (1908–1992). It possibly was the most important student’s gallery of all time as its exhibition program found its succession in the exhibitions of the first decades of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In 1932, Lincoln Kirstein moved to New York. He had become member of MoMA’s Advisory Committee and Chairman of the Exhibition Committee.
To develop the exhibition program of the HSfCA the three students could rely on the many connections they had. They knew scholars, art collectors and art galleries, as well as other institutions, including the important Wadsworth Atheneum at Hartford and A. Everett ‘Chick’ Austin, its new, talented director since October 1927 3 .
Our blog post artist-info.com Blog post The Harvard Society for Contemporary Art – Exhibition Timeline and Artists 1929-1932) gives you an overview of HSfCA’s exciting exhibition timeline and the shown artists.

‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’ at the HSfCA in December 1930

So far the exhibition ’82 | The Bauhaus 1919–1928′, at the MoMA (07.12.1938-30.01.1939) with Herbert Bayer as curator is labeled as the first retrospective. 4  There are many reasons to call the HSfCA exhibition end of 1930 not an ordinary exhibition but a retrospective, therefore the first Bauhaus retrospective.
In its Bauhaus exhibition, the HSfCA did show 25 artists. In New York in 1938, the MoMA retrospective did show 63 artists. Present in both shows were 12 artists: Josef Albers, Herbert Bayer, Mies van der Rohe, Theo van Doesburg, Lyonel Feininger, Walter Gropius, Johannes Itten, Paul Klee, László Moholy-Nagy, Heinz Nösselt, Oskar Schlemmer, and Gunta Stölzl. See our table below comparing both artist lists.
For the shown items and art works, Lincoln Kirstein contacted collectors, art galleries, scholars, and Alfred H. Barr (1902-1981). The other important lenders are listed below. Asking for original material in Dessau and shipping it to Cambridge would have been out of scope regarding the gallery’s budget and time schedule.
For the Bauhaus Retrospective at the MoMA in December 1938 the Notes of the Press Release dated 02.12.1938 explain: “Under existing conditions in Germany it was not possible to bring more actual objects to this country for the exhibition. Limited to objects which were available, supplemented by enlarged photographs, the exhibition does not show the entire scope of the Bauhaus in every field of its work.
Although most of the objects and designs shown were made more than a decade ago, they were based on such sound principles of beauty and usefulness that even today many of them seem well above the level or ordinary contemporary design.
However, the principal theme of the exhibition is the Bauhaus as an idea. That idea seems as valid today as it was in the days when the Bauhaus flourished.”
Apparently, Kirstein did not want to wait end of 1930 and opened his Bauhaus exhibition immediately after his ‘Photography 1930’ exhibition (07.-29.11.1930), his American answer to Film und Foto in Stuttgart 1929. ‘Photography 1930’ traveled in December 1930 to A. Everett Austin’s Wadsworth Atheneum. 10 of his 21 shown artists were part of the exhibition in Stuttgart 5 .
To find out more about photography in the 20s and 30s read our blog post artist-info.com Blog post ‘The artists of the Kurt Kirchbach and Thomas Walther Collection – Avant-Garde Photography in the 1920s & 1930s’.

Following the Introduction of the exhibition catalogue, Lincoln Kirstein knew about the dismissal of Hannes Meyer. All of a sudden, the future of the Bauhaus was uncertain.
Alfred H. Barr, already since a year founding director of the Museum of Modern Art, may have seen the dismissal of Meyer as an important moment in time to make at least the American public and art world aware of the importance of the Bauhaus. He had visited Dessau in 1927, and supported and helped organizing the HSfCA Bauhaus exhibition in December 1930. During the past years, he had developed a distinctive view about the international movements in art since 1900. He was teaching at the Wellesley College from 1924-1926, providing art courses like ‘Tradition and Revolt in Modern Painting’ (1926), and was well aware of the new responsibilities art schools were facing, regarding the tectonic shifts in the arts and the failure of the traditional academies.

Cubism and Abstract Art-Flowchart 1936

Evidently, the Bauhaus was so important to Alfred H. Barr that it became part of his famous flowchart about movements in modern art. He published it on the dust jacket of his ’46 | Cubism and Abstract Art’ exhibition catalogue at the MoMA in March 1936. The Bauhaus holds in this flowchart a unique position: It represents a stylistic reference along all the other isms and it is the only educational concept and school in his flow chart.

Kirstein refers in the exhibition catalogue’s Introduction as well to the important role of Henry van de Velde for the new educational structure of the Bauhaus. Van de Velde was in charge of the ‘Kunstgewerbliche Seminar’ in 1902, later ‘Kunstgewerbliches Institut’, Weimar, until its closure in 1915 because of WWI. “He has always insisted that the ideas of the Bauhaus were his ideas.” 6 After WWI, the ‘Staatliches Bauhaus in Weimar’ was founded in April 1919 by merging the ‘Großherzoglich-Sächsischen Hochschule für Bildende Kunst’, Weimar and the ‘Kunstgewerbeschule’, Weimar. Van de Velde recommended Walter Gropius as its director. Lincoln Kirstein mentions as well Constructivism, “… being the dogma of what was believed to be a new style in architecture. … It really evolved from Cubism, treating an interior, for example, as a tri-dimensional canvas. Painting at the Bauhaus was now practically forbidden. It was considered as bourgeois and capitalistic. All the emphasis was focused on the necessary, the functional; panel painting did not exist for the Bauhaus. The theorist Kandinsky started to invent not pictures but whole rooms.” 7

End of the 20s ‘Modernism’ had become a topic including many sub and side currents. Again, looking back some years and trying to imagine the period’s challenges provides more insight. First, the ‘Sonderbund Ausstellung’ in Cologne in 1912, then, under the influence of the ‘Sonderbund Ausstellung’, the famous Armory Show in 1913, the ‘International Exhibition of Modern Art’ (17.02.-15.03.1913) organized by the Association of American Painters and Sculptors, plaid a key role, being the death warrant of the National Academy of Design, New York. As the new currents in the arts were more visible in Europe, Alfred H. Barr may have felt that there is an important void, which needs to be filled, to help the arts in the United States finding their directions on an international roadmap.

There are other shows which should be mentioned, and which have most certainly been discussed in all art circles. Please see as well our list below. Among them is the most important ‘Erste Russische Kunstausstellung Berlin 1922’ (October – December 1922). To see there Naum Gabo, Karlis Joganson, Konstantin Medunetsky, Aleksander Rodchenko, Vladimir Tatlin, and other Constructivists must have been striking. 8 Three years later the ‘Neue Sachlichkeit – Deutsche Malerei seit dem Expressionismus’ exhibition at the Kunsthalle Mannheim (14.06.-13.09.1925), organized by Gustav Friedrich Hartlaub.
artist-info.com Blog post See our blog post on Franz Roh and ‘Neue Sachlichkeit’. The genesis of this exhibition, the exchange between Franz Roh and Gustav Hartlaub, starts some years earlier. Although Russian avant-garde art was of great importance and influence, Italian art was influential, too. Visible for everybody in ’43 | Das junge Italien’‘, Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover, 22.05.-19.06.1921; organized by Mario Broglio (1891-1948). The exhibition with eight artists was shown before in Berlin, Alte Nationalgalerie, and later in Hamburg.
Furthermore, the ‘Internationale Kunstausstellung Dresden 1926’, June-September 1926, was an important meeting place for the art world.
The ‘An International Exhibition of Modern Art Assembled by the Société Anonyme’, at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, November 1926 – January 1927, shows the awareness and new visions in Europe and America and as well, the different point of views in the mid-20s in New York. Katherine S. Dreier (1877–1952), co-founder of the Société Anonyme and since 1916 friend with Marcel Duchamp, who did show his famous Fountain in April 1917 at Alfred Stieglitz’ 291 gallery, was not among the lenders of the Bauhaus exhibition at the HSfCA.
The influential Alfred Stieglitz took part in the inaugural exhibition of the HSfCA, ‘An Exhibition of American Art’ (19.02.-15.03.1929), and in the already mentioned ‘Photography 1930’ exhibition at the HSfCA (07.-29.11.1930).

The Exhibition Catalogue of ‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’

The two and a half page Introduction of the exhibition catalogue is attributed to Lincoln Kirstein. The full text can be found on this artist-info exhibition subpage.
At the end of the text, he adds: “The information in this catalogue was supplied through the courtesy of Mr. Alfred V. Churchill, Mr. Phillip Johnson [Philip Johnson], and of Helmuth von Erfa [Helmut von Erffa], once a pupil of the Bauhaus at Weimar.”
Alfred V. Churchill – see below ‘Lenders’
Philip Johnson – see below ‘Lenders’
Helmut von Erffa (1900-1979), came to the United States in 1923. Von Erffa graduated from Harvard in 1931 and received a master’s degree in 1933. He obtained a Master of Fine Arts degree from Princeton University in 1935. Joined Rutgers as an assistant professor of art in 1946, chairman of the Rutgers University art department until 1964.

Sections of the HSfCA exhibition in the exhibition Catalogue

Artists mentioned in the catalogue (including the shown art work)
Paintings and Drawings (Color Prints, Drawings, Etchings, Color Lithographs, Lithographs, Oils, Watercolors, Woodcuts): Borchert, L. Feininger, Itten, Kandinsky, Klee, Marcks, Schlemmer, Schreyer.
Portfolio of Russian and Italian artists.
Typography: Bayer.
Decorative Arts and Photographs of Decorative Arts: Classen, Brandt, Nösselt, Stölzl.
Photographs: Th. L. Feininger, and Photographs of the Bauhaus Buildings.
Photographs of Paintings by Albers, L. Feininger, Muche, Bayer, Klee, Kandinsky.
Books and Periodicals: Bayer, Clauss, Doesburg, Gleizes, Gropius, Kandinsky, Klee, Moholy-Nagy, Malevich, Mondrian, Oud, Schlemmer.


The list of lenders and the short notices show the scope and high quality the HSfCA envisioned for its Bauhaus exhibition.
Jere Abbott, art historian (1897–1982). Fellow student of Alfred H. Barr. After helping to establish a department of fine arts at Wesleyan University in 1929, he helped establishing the MoMA in New York. He became the associate director of the museum at the time of its founding in 1929 and retained that position until 1932.
Mohammed Agha [Mehemed Fehmy Agha] (1896-1978), art director for Vogue, Vanity Fair, and House & Garden (Poster and Catalog of the Paris Werkbund Exhibition 1930)
Alfred H. Barr (1902-1981), founding director of the Museum of Modern Art, New York (contributed Bauhaus material, that he collected in 1927 on his trip through Europe and Russia)
John Becker Gallery, New York
Alfred Vance Churchill, American painter (1864-1949). A noted art critic, lecturer as well as a teacher and painter (whose work appeared in the Armory Show in Chicago in 1913), he influenced the standards of art teaching, especially as vice-president of the College Art Association.
The Detroit Institute of Arts, The DIA collection is regarded as among the top six museums in the United States with an encyclopedic collection, which spans the globe from ancient Egyptian and European works to contemporary art.
Phillip Johnson [Philip Johnson], American architect (1906-2005). In 1928, he met German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who was designing at the time the German Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition. In 1930, Johnson joined the architecture department of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. There he arranged for American visits by Gropius and Le Corbusier, and negotiated the first American commission for Mies van der Rohe. In 1932, working with Hitchcock and Alfred H. Barr, Jr., he organized the first exhibition on Modern architecture at the Museum of Modern Art.
15 | Modern Architecture – International Exhibition (1/2)
15 | Modern Architecture – International Exhibition (2/2)
J. B. Neumann Gallery, New York [Jsrael Ber Neumann (1887-1961)], J. B. Neumann (1887–1961) opened his first gallery in Berlin in 1911, exhibiting works by Edvard Munch and members of Die Brücke. In 1915-16, he was secretary to the Berlin Secession. From 1921 to 1927, he had an exclusive contract with Max Beckmann. Neumann moved to New York in 1923, leaving the Galerie Neumann-Nierendorf, Berlin to Karl Nierendorf and the Munich gallery to Günther Franke. Directed New Art Circle. Published periodical Artlover.
Dr. Wilhelm Reinhold Valentiner (1880–1958) German art historian, art critic and museum official. In 1905, he was called to Berlin by Wilhelm von Bode (1845-1929), under whom he worked at the ‘Kaiser Friedrich Museum’ and the ‘Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin’. In 1906, he published his dissertation on Rembrandt that he started in 1904: ‘Rembrandt auf der Lateinschule’. In 1907, he was appointed the first curator of the department of decorative arts in The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, which under his supervision became one of the foremost in the world. From 1924-1945, he was appointed first advisor and then Director of the Detroit Museum of Art, which later became The Detroit Institute of Arts. Under his leadership, the museum developed into one of the leading art institutions in the country.
E. Weyhe Gallery, New York [Erhard Weyhe (1882-1971)], came to the United States in 1914. Important art books dealer and publisher.

The Artists shown in the HSfCA 1930 and the MoMA 1938 Bauhaus Retrospective

Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau
Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, 12.1930 - 13.01.1931
[Dr] Entartete Kunst, Dresden 1933
[Mü] Entartete Kunst, München 1937
(Exh.)82 | The Bauhaus 1919-1928
Museum of Modern Art, 07.12.1938 - 30.01.1939

[12 artists shown in both exhibitions]
1Albers, Josef (1888 - 1976) (376)1Albers, Josef (1888 - 1976)(376)
2Bayer, Herbert (1900 - 1985)(128)2Ardon, Mordecai (1896 - 1992)(15)
3Borchert, Erich (1907 - 1944)(5)3Arndt, Gertrud (1903 - 2000)(11)
4Brandt, Marianne (1893 - 1983)(28)4Bayer, Herbert (1900 - 1985) [Mü](128)
5Classen(3)5Bogler, Theodor (1897 - 1968)(8)
6Clauss, Alfred (1906 - 1998)(3)6Brandt, Marianne (1893 - 1983)(28)
7Doesburg, Theo van (1883 - 1931)(118)7Bredendieck, Hin (1904 - 1995)(6)
8Feininger, Lyonel (1871 - 1956)(318)8Breuer, Marcel (1902 - 1981)(37)
9Feininger, Theodor Lux (1910 - 2011) [Dr] [Mü](41)9Citroën-Vallentin, Ruth (1906 - 2002)(1)
10Gleizes, Albert Léon (1881 - 1953)(150)10Consemüller-Hollôs, Ruth (1904 - 1993)(2)
11Gropius, Walter (1883 - 1969)(39)11Dieckmann, Erich (1896 - 1944)(3)
12Itten, Johannes (1888 - 1967) [Mü](98)12Doesburg, Theo van (1883 - 1931)(118)
13Kandinsky, Wassily (1866 - 1944) [Dr] [Mü](628)13Erps-Breuer, Martha (1902 - 1977)(2)
14Klee, Paul (1879 - 1940) [Dr] [Mü](644)14Feininger, Lyonel (1871 - 1956) [Dr] [Mü](318)
15Malevich, Kazimir (1879 - 1935)(268)15Feist, Werner David (1909 - 1998)(17)
16Marcks, Gerhard (1889 - 1981) [Dr] [Mü](156)16Fischer, Margrit(1)
17FMies van der Rohe, Ludwig (1886 - 1969)(66)17Forbát, Alfréd [Fred] (1897 - 1972)(12)
18Mondrian, Piet (1872 - 1944) [Mü](288)18Gropius, Walter (1883 - 1969)(39)
19Muche, Georg (1895 - 1987) [Mü](74)19Gropius & Meyer, [Walter Gropius 1883-1969 & Adolf Meyer 1881-1929](3)
20Móhóly-Nagy, László (1895 - 1946) [Mü](390)20Grosz, George (1893 - 1959) [Dr] [Mü](305)
21Nösselt, Heinz (1900 - 1950)(5)21Grote, Thoma (1896 - 1977)(2)
22Oud, J. J. P. (1890 - 1963)(13)22Hartwig, Josef (1880 - 1956)(10)
23Schlemmer, Oskar (1888 - 1943) [Mü](209)23Hassenpflug, Gustav (1907 - 1977)(5)
24Schreyer, Lothar (1886 - 1966) [Mü](34)24Hirschfeld-Mack, Ludwig (1893 - 1965)(13)
25Stölzl, Gunta (1897 - 1983)(18)25Hoffmann, Hubert (1904 - 1999)(6)
26Itten, Johannes (1888 - 1967) [Mü](98)
27Jucker, Carl Jacob (1902 - 1997)(3)
28Keler, Peter (1898 - 1982)(7)
29Kerkovius, Ida (1879 - 1970) [Mü](76)
30Klee, Paul (1879 - 1940) [Dr] [Mü](644)
31Knau, Josef (1897 - 1945)(2)
32Koch-Otte, Benita (1892 - 1976)(3)
33Krajewsky, Max (1892 - 1972)(6)
34Lang, Lothar (1907 - 1974)(3)
35Leudesdorff-Engstfeld, Lore (1902 - 1986)(4)
36Lindig, Otto (1895 - 1966)(9)
37Marx, Gerda(1)
38Menzel, W.(1)
39Meyer, Hannes (1889 - 1954)(14)
40Molnár, Farkas Ferenc (1895 - 1945)(13)
41Móhóly-Nagy, László (1895 - 1946) [Mü](390)
42Mögelin, Else (1887 - 1982)(4)
43Neumann, Klaus(1)
44Nösselt, Heinz (1900 - 1950)(5)
45Pap, Gyula (1899 - 1983)(9)
46Paris, Rudolf (1896 - 1973)(2)
47Rasch, Maria (1897 - 1959)(2)
48Rittweger & Tümpel, [Otto Rittweger 1904-1965 & Wolfgang Tümpel 1903-1978](1)
49Schawinsky, Xanti (1904 - 1979)(28)
50Schlemmer, Oskar (1888 - 1943) [Mü](209)
51Schmidt, Kurt (1901 - 1991)(11)
52Schwerdtfeger, Kurt (1897 - 1966)(18)
53Siedhoff-Buscher, Alma (1899 - 1944)(3)
54Slutzky, Naum (1894 - 1965)(7)
55Soupault, Ré (1901 - 1996)(6)
56Stölzl, Gunta (1897 - 1983)(16)
57Sörensen-Popitz, Irmgard (1896 - 1993)(2)
58Tolziner, Philipp (1906 - 1996)(2)
59Victoria, Charlotte(2)
60Wagenfeld & Jucker, [Wilhelm Wagenfeld & Carl Jakob Jucker](3)
61Wassilieff, Nicolai (1901 - 1977)(5)
62Wittwer, Hans (1894 - 1952)(4)
63Zimmermann, Werner (1906 - 1975)(4)
Source: artist-info
About documenting exhibitions 1880 to present see art-exhibitions.com"

Bauhaus Timeline and Important Exhibitions and Events 1900-1938

YearBauhausOther Venues
1902'Kunstgewerbliches Seminar', director Henry van de Velde (1863-1957)
1907'Kunstgewerbliches Institut'
Henry van der Velde, director of the 'Großherzoglich Sächsische Kunstgewerbeschule Weimar', commissioned by Großherzog Wilhelm Ernst to take care of the design of products of arts and crafts workshops and industry in the country. His design was adopted successfully. His task was similar to the one the Bauhaus has in 1919.
1912'Internationale Kunstausstellung des Sonderbundes westdeutscher Kunstfreunde und Künstler 1912'; Köln, 05.-09.1912
1913'International Exhibition of Modern Art';
organized by the Association of American Painters and Sculptors, 17.02. - 15.03.1913; 300.000 visitors including Chicago, and Boston.
1914World War I
28.07.1914 – 11.11.1918
1915The 'Kunstgewerbliches Institut' was closed in 1915 due to WWI.
Van de Velde left Germany in 1917 for Switzerland. His family followed him in November 1918.
1919The 'Staatliche Bauhaus in Weimar' was founded April 12, 1919 by merging the 'Großherzoglich-Sächsischen Hochschule für Bildende Kunst', Weimar and the 1915 closed 'Kunstgewerbeschule Weimar'. Van de Velde proposes Walter Gropius (1883-1969) as his successor, who labeled the new school.
1921‘43 | Das junge Italien', Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover, 22.05. - 19.06.1921; organized by Mario Broglio (1891-1948), in Berlin, Alte Nationalgalerie, and later in Hamburg.

‘Zehn Jahre Sturm', Galerie der Sturm, Berlin, 09.1921 (Herwarth Walden)
1922'Erste Russische Kunstausstellung Berlin 1922'; Berlin, 10.-12.1922
See as well our blog post for more details
artist-info.com Blog post Erste Russische Kunstausstellung Berlin 1922 – The Artists)
1923In 1923, a conflict with Walter Gropius who favored a focus on mass production rather than individual artistic work led to Itten's resignation from the Bauhaus. He was replaced by László Moholy-Nagy.Exhibition of Russian Painting and Sculpture, Brooklyn Museum (NY), 24.02. - 06.04.1923
‘Russian Painting and Sculpture (1/2) Paintings and Drawings'
‘Russian Painting and Sculpture (2/2) Sculpture'
1924In the years following World War I, Germany started to turn around. The economy began to recover after the 1924 Dawes Plan.
1925After the parliament election in Thuringia in February 1924, the budget of the Bauhaus was cut by 50%.
The masters of the Bauhaus decide in 1925 to move with the Bauhaus to Dessau. Gropius could assure the name rights for the Bauhaus in Dessau. Weimar could not use the name Bauhaus anymore.
‘Neue Sachlichkeit – Deutsche Malerei seit dem Expressionismus', Kunsthalle Mannheim, 14.06. - 13.09.1925; Curator Gustav Friedrich Hartlaub (1884 - 1963)

Franz Roh publishes his book 'Nachexpressionismus. Magischer Realismus. Probleme der neuesten europäischen Malerei’, automn 1925.

See for more details our blog post
artist-info.com Blog post 'Neue Sachlichkeit – Franz Roh, Exhibitions and their Artists, from 1921 up to the present')
1926‘Die neue Sachlichkeit', Kunstverein Jena, 16.05.-13.06.1926; Curator Walter Dexel

Internationale Kunstausstellung Dresden 1926, Juni-September 1926

‘An International Exhibition of Modern Art Assembled by the Société Anonyme', Brooklyn Museum of Art, 11.1926 - 01.1927
1927‘Die neue Sachlichkeit', Galerie Neumann-Nierendorf, Berlin, 03.-04.1927

‘Neue Reklame', Jenaer Kunstverein, 05.-06.1927
1928On April 1, 1928, Walter Gropius resigns as director of the Bauhaus.
Following his proposal the Suisse architect Meyer, Hannes [Hans Emil] (1889 - 1954) became new director.
Walter Gropius leaves Germany in 1934. He arrives in February 1937 in USA.
Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer teach at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (1937–1952)
‘Neue Wege der Photographie', Jenaer Kunstverein, 03. - 05.1928
1929‘Fotografie der Gegenwart', Folkwang Museum, Essen, in 01.–02.1929;
travels in 1929 to Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover; Whitechapel Gallery, London; Kunstverein Frankfurt a.M.

Tentoonstelling van de Onafhankelijken, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, 11.05.-10.06.1929
‘Tentoonstelling van de Onafhankelijken (1/2) – Inzending Duitsche ‘Neue Sachlichkeit’, (Berlin, Breslau, Dresden, Hannover, Karlsruhe, Köln, Oldenburg, Paris)'
‘Tentoonstelling van de Onafhankelijken (2/2) – Vereeniging van Beeldende Kunstnaars Amsterdam'

'Film und Foto', International Exhibition, organized by the Deutscher Werkbund in Stuttgart in 05.1929

‘Foto-Auge | Œil et photo | Photo-Eye', influential Book by Franz Roh and Jan Tschichold, 05.1929

‘1 | Cézanne Gauguin Seurat Van Gogh', MoMA opening exhibition, curator Alfred H. Barr; 07.11.-07.12.1929, 47.000 visitors.
Wall Street Crash of 1929, Black Tuesday, October 1929
1930Oskar Schlemmer and Paul Klee are leaving the Bauhaus. The Bauhaus has fallen into disrepute and the city of Dessau dismissed Hannes Meyer for his communist ideas on 01.08.1930 without notice.

End of 1930 the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886-1969) became director of the Bauhaus in Dessau.
He designed the German Pavilion for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition, together with Lilly Reich.
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe & Lilly Reich
'20e Salon des artistes décorateurs français', Paris, 'Section allemande' by the Deutscher Werkbund, responsible is Walter Gropius (with support by László Moholy-Nagy, Marcel Breuer, Herbert Bayer), 14.05.-13.07.1930

Modern German Art, Wadsworth Atheneum, 05.1930 - 06.1930
‘Painting', ‘Sculpture', ‘Prints'

‘Das Lichtbild', München, 06.-09.1930

‘Photography 1930', Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, Cambridge (MA), 07.-29.11.1930
'Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau', Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, Cambridge (MA), December 1930 - 14.01.1931
1931In 1931, the NSDAP won the municipal election in Dessau and closed 1932 the Bauhaus. The KPD voted against, the SPD abstained from voting.
In 1932, the Bauhaus moved to Berlin and was closed in 1933.
'Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau', John Becker Gallery, New York, 20.01.-10.02.1931
'Bauhaus, Dessau, Germany', The Arts Club of Chicago, 13.-28.03.1931

‘Retrospective Exhibition of Landscape Painting', Wadsworth Atheneum, 01.-02.1931

‘11 | German Painting and Sculpture', MoMA, 03. -04.1931
193215 | Modern Architecture - International Exhibition, MoMA 02.-03.1932, curator Philip Johnson
‘Photographs Illustrating the Extent of Modern Architecture'
‘Models, Photographs of work'
1933Entartete Kunst, City Hall Dresden 23.09.1933. Traveling exhibition.
1934Machine Art, MoMA, 05.03. –29.04.1934
1935‘Impressionism to Abstraction, 13 Women Painters', Wadsworth Atheneum, 12.1934-01.1935

‘Abstract Art', Wadsworth Atheneum, 10. - 11.1935
1936'46 | Cubism and Abstract Art', MoMA, 02.03.-09.04.1936

‘Abstract Painting', Wadsworth Atheneum, 12.1936
1937Entartete Kunst, München, Hofgarten, 07.-11.1937

‘55 | Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism', MoMA 07.12.1936-17.01.1937
1938'82 | The Bauhaus 1919–1928', MoMA, 07.12.1938-30.01.1939, curator Herbert Bayer (1900-1985)
1939World War II
01.09.1939 – 02.03.1945


  1. Sibylle Hoiman, Matthias Noell: Die ‘Section allemande’ in Paris 1930; in: Hellmuth Th. Seemann, Thorsten Valk (ed.): Entwürfe der Moderne. Bauhaus-Ausstellungen 1923-2019, pp. 149; Wallstein Verlag Göttingen 2019.
  2. The catalog courtesy: National Gallery of Art Library, David K. E. Bruce Fund, Washington D.C..
  3. Eufene R. Gaddis: Magician of the Modern. Chick Austin and the Transformation of the Arts in America; Alfred A. Knopf, New York 2000.
  4. Anke Blümm: Etappen einer Legendenbildung; in: Hellmuth Th. Seemann, Thorsten Valk (ed.): Entwürfe der Moderne. Bauhaus-Ausstellungen 1923-2019, pp. 199; Wallstein Verlag Göttingen 2019.
  5. Lincoln Kirstein (att.): Introduction; Catalog ‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’, Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, Cambridge (MA), 1930, text, page 1
  6. Lincoln Kirstein (att.): Introduction; Catalog ‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’, Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, Cambridge (MA), 1930, text, page 1
  7. Lincoln Kirstein (att.): Introduction; Catalog ‘Bauhaus: 1919-1923 Weimar / 1924 Dessau’, Harvard Society for Contemporary Art, Cambridge (MA), 1930, text, page 1
  8. Christina Lodder, Russian Constructivism; New Haven and London: Yale University Press 1983
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