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Comments Posted 11.03.09 | PERMALINK | PRINT

Mark Lamster

From Bauhaus to My House


schlemmer_moma_bauhaus_stairwayjpg

Nearly thirty years ago, Tom Wolfe made quite a splash with his reactionary little attack on modern architecture, From Bauhaus to Our House, his premise being that radical modernism imported from Germany had reduced American building to an impersonal frigidity. It was a dubious argument then, and a new show at MoMA demonstrates surely that it is flat out ridiculous. "Bauhaus: 1919-1933," curated by Barry Bergdoll and Leah Dickerman, surveys the Dessau school's history; if you think of the Bauhaus as a sterile, dogmatic place, you will surely be stunned by the scope of work done there, and inspired by its humanity. All the favorites are here: Albers, Gropius, Mies, Klee, Breuer, Feininger. But there are many voices that will be unfamiliar, too, and working in all disciplines—photography, textiles, architecture, typography, graphic design, product design, etc. Walk through the show and it's impossible not to point at objects and think "Want Want Want." An Albers lounge chair? Want. A Bayer poster? Want. A very Diebenkorn-y Klee? Want. Don't miss it.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark Lamster is the architecture critic of the Dallas Morning News and a professor at the University of Texas at Arlington School of Architecture. A contributing editor to Architectural Review, he is currently at work on his third book, a biography of the late architect Philip Johnson. Follow: @marklamster.
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