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The Bauhaus Idea and Bauhaus Politics

Éva Forgács

Chapter 1. The Beauty of Progress

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On 20 APRIL 1919 Walter Gropius received his appointment as director in the Weimar Court Chamberlain's Office. In 1969 he recalled: 'I arrived at the name instinctively. I did not want to use the term Bauhütte which had exclusively medieval connotations. I wanted a new, paradoxical name, something more far-reaching. The German word bauen has a very wide-ranging meaning: among other things, one builds character.1

Gropius was born on 18 May 1883 into a family coming from a long line of German Intellectuals. Both his father and his grandfather were architects, the latter a friend of the prestigious architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel. His grandfather's brother, Martin Gropius, designed the Berlin Museum of Applied Art, and became director of the Berlin School of Applied Art in 1867.

In the early years of the century Walter Gropius followed with keen interest the revolution taking place in technology and architecture, the beginnings of mass production and the rapid rationalization of its pr...

© Central European University Press, 1995

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