Rebuilt Bauhaus houses offer a striking backdrop to our September issue’s tailoring story
The newly reconstructed Masters’ Houses in Dessau opened to the public earlier this year, completing a refresh of the iconic Bauhaus campus in Germany, for which we couldn’t resist paying a visit for our latest September Fashion issue (W* 186).
The houses, designed by German architect and Bauhaus school founder Walter Gropius in 1925, were destroyed at the end of WWII and have now been abstractly reconstructed by Berlin-based practice Bruno Fioretti Marquez Architekten. The two buildings, named ’Gropius’ and ’Moholy-Nagy’, acted as the perfect architectural environment for our tailoring story ’Modern Lines’.
Working with the houses’ existing Gropius drawings, models and photos, the architects have been developing the project since 2010. Their concept revolved around a drastically pared-down interpretation of the original buildings, recreating the shells, while simplifying the details. Made out of poured concrete, the structures feature a sculptural interior, ’a fragmented rendition of the original internal organisation of the buildings’, which align the architecture with an art installation.
Inside, the houses are minimally furnished, featuring an art piece by Olaf Nicolai (the Moholy-Nagy house) and also acting as an exhibition space (the Gropius house). Nicolai’s work, inspired by the light experiments of artist, designer and Bauhaus professor László Moholy-Nagy, is entitled ’La pigment de lumière’ (the colour of light) and creates a ’grid’ of rectangles and squares.
Representing a key piece in the history of contemporary architecture, the Bauhaus Dessau is a well-known UNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular architectural pilgrimage route, making this project one of the year’s most exciting openings. The school has plans to host a diverse programme of events in and around the houses over the coming months, with each designed to highlight the school’s rich history.