History of the Bauhaus art style
The Bauhaus movement began in 1919 in Germany. Since then, the style Bauhaus cultivated has been spread all over the world and been reinterpreted over and over again. Now, whenever you hear the word ‘Bauhaus’, all you think of beautiful, clean design.
What happens if you want a slice of this design in your own home? Well, you can browse Project Nord’s collection of Bauhaus designs of course. Take a look and see where this twentieth-century powerhouse of design could find its place in your home.
What does Bauhaus art posters look like?
Which are the most recognisable elements of Bauhaus design? Like we said, Bauhaus is characterised by clean design choices which create minimalist designs. Even though they are simple, the Bauhaus style doesn’t shy away from colour!
A lot of the time, primary colours are used in blocks in the pieces. This subtle experimentation comes off very well. Also, off white colours are used instead of bright white. This makes the design more cohesive and subtle.
This style of design also has a number of Bauhaus fonts which are often used. In fact, there was a typeface called ‘Bauhaus’ which developed out of the movement. It was created in 1969 by a designer called Joe Taylor. Half a century after the movement had begun, artists were still innovating in the name of the style.
Does all this sound like a bit of you? Shop Bauhaus wall art here at Project Nord!
You can create your own Bauhaus interior in the style of this historic design moment. Have some fun experimenting with our Bauhaus series today! It’s great fun, believe in us!
How exactly did the Bauhaus movement begin?
Now, let’s wind it right back to the beginning to the year 1919. A German art school operating under the name of Staatliches Bauhaus, was founded in Weimar by Walter Gropius.
The school brought together lots of different sorts of art-making under one roof. Even though Walter Gropius was an architect, the school did not have an architecture department to begin with. Apart from that form of design, everything else was present. It dealt with graphic design, interior design, and typography, to name a few.
The school was active until the year 1933 and moved twice during that time. At each new location, first in Dessau and then Berlin, the school pursued different directions of design and were managed by different people. Perhaps this is the reason why Bauhaus style covers so many different disciplines.
Unfortunately, the school was shut down during the early Nazi regime in 1933. It was thought of as a space where liberal ideas could spread through intellectualism. Despite being shut down, the school’s ideas have permeated through history.
When Bauhaus first began, it was a traditional arts and crafts movement. This meant that lots of different skills and competencies came together under the name of Bauhaus and people were encouraged to create, crossing different media and using their hands.
However, as the movement progressed, it became much more interested in industrial design as well. With the rise of mechanisation at the end of the nineteenth century, the Bauhaus movement sought to connect up fine art with industry. They saw that mechanisation was the future and wanted to make sure that art went forward with it.
A classic example of Bauhaus work is the Bauhaus poster from 1923. This design was created as part of a competition but is now amongst the most famous Bauhaus posters. To fulfil the criteria of the competition, people must include the Bauhaus symbol, and the time and place of a Bauhaus exhibition. This poster was Joost Smidt’s contribution which won!
From this poster, it’s easy to see the characteristic elements of Bauhaus design. Geometric shapes form around one another. The colours used are simple black and rich reds against a slightly grey background.
The industrial motif stands out when you look at this poster as well. The straight lines and curves mimic some sort of transport, maybe a train or piece of machinery. The design has movement whilst being so simple.
The font used is also typical of Bauhaus typography. Although it does have slight serifs on each character, the design is very straightforward and practical. It’s easy to see what each of the letters is and yet fits with the theme of simple movement.
There are also very subtle elements of texture which are brought in. These sections however are enclosed within blocks, so it would never take away from the rest of the design. It is the perfect print by a key Bauhaus artist.
Do you like what you hear so far? Keep reading and we will tell you about the Bauhaus art prints in our collection.
Project Nord’s collection of Bauhaus wall posters
So, if you like the sound of the movement, take a look at our Bauhaus inspired posters! As we have now celebrated 100 years of Bauhaus, we know for sure that this style of design is not going away!
First up, we have our Bauhaus Graphic Design poster. This piece would make a playful, retro addition to any space. The colour palette in keeps with Bauhaus design principles. With those rich yellows, reds, and blues, colour can be brought into your scheme in a subtle but bold way.
The next of our designs is our Bauhaus poster. This design has quite a different vibe, using icy blue tones with a deep red to offset it.
Featuring a large circle in the centre, different shapes intersect and overlap. It’s a really intriguing design which only grows more interesting the more you look at it. View it for yourself!
So, which design you go for depends on the sort of home you have.
It would be lovely if you went all-in with the Bauhaus theme and went for some Bauhaus-inspired furniture as well.
The Wassily Chair, designed by Marcel Breuer, was another key moment in the movement. This chair reimagined the nineteenth-century drawing room chair, modernising it into a much more industrial-looking design.
Bare tubes work as the skeleton for the design. Rectangular sections of fabric are then pulled between the tubes, to give you a place to sit.
The effect? Geometric shapes held in mid-air. Now isn’t that a stunning piece of furniture design. It is a total work art.
There are so many pieces of furniture which have been created since, inspired by Breuer's design. It would look brilliant to match up such pieces with Project Nord posters!
Another innovator who created furniture in the Bauhaus style was Mies Van Der Rohe. The Barcelona chair is recognisable even from its name! Again, metal was used in tubes with geometric shapes and straight lines in between.
Architecture and design met in his work too. Mies was also an architect who actually headed the school just before it was shut down. Through his buildings, he wanted to establish a modern style, typical enough that it would enter the canon like other architectural styles, gothic and classical for example. He certainly succeeded!
And, if you really like Bauhaus style, you should visit the places where it was founded. As we stated earlier, Bauhaus moved twice during the time the school was operational. Therefore, there are three sites you can visit. You can completely submerge yourself in history there!
The architectural buildings the school designed are also brilliant to visit, one of which has been made into a Unesco World Heritage Site. Try going for a visit and if you’re feeling inspired, get a Project Nord poster to remind you of your trip.
So, if you’d like to have your piece of this moment in design history, go ahead and buy Bauhaus poster products from Project Nord today. Celebrate Bauhaus’ 100th anniversary in style.