after World War I, architect Walter Gropius is called to rule the Grandducal
Saxonian School of Fine Arts (Sächsische Hochschule für Bildende Kunst)
and the Grandducal Saxonian School of Arts and Crafts (Sächsische Kunstgewerbeschule),
van de Velde's school. He unifies both institutes and founds, in 1919,
the Staatliches Bauhaus (State Bauhaus).
The first program, published in the same year, according to Leonardo Benevolo,
has a prophetic and obscure tone:
aim of all creative activity is a building! The decoration of buildings
was once the noblest function of fine arts, and fine arts were indispensable
to great architecture. Today they exist in complacent isolation, and can
only be rescued by the conscious co-operation and collaboration of all
The State Bauhaus in Weimar is an institution operated by the Free State
of Saxony - Weimar - Eisenach, just a few months old at the time. The
Bauhaus Manifesto commits it
to forging all forms of art into a single whole, to bringing back together
all artistic disciplines - sculpture, painting, arts and crafts, and manual
trades - and making them integral components of a new art of building:
Walter Gropius moves his office from Berlin to Weimar (later joined by
Carl Fieger and Ernst Neufert).
Gropius emphasizes three main features of teaching in Bauhaus:
Parallelism between theoretical and practical teaching.
Continuous contact between reality and work.
Presence of creative teachers.
The school is transfered to Dessau in 1925, and later, in 1932, to Berlin.
Eventually, the school dissolved itself under pressure from Nazis in 1933.
The Bauhaus is innovative, since it searches breaking dichotomy between
art and manufacture. The rationalism that Gropius invokes is not an ideological
program but a working method. His thought meets a profound, non conventional
liaison with the heritage of humanistic thought.