Until October 31st Bauhaus Dessau is showing an exhibition dedicated to one of the school’s most important and interesting members, Marcel Breuer.
Born in Pécs, Hungary in 1902 Marcel Breuer joined Bauhaus Weimar in 1920 before being appointed a Junior Master and Head of the Carpentry Workshop at Bauhaus Dessau in 1925.
Always very independently minded, Breuer found himself regularly at odds with the Bauhaus Masters – most notably over his decision to produce and market his steel tube furniture independent of the institution – and in 1928 finally quit the school to concentrate on his own projects.
Although a well travelled man who completed many important and relevant projects throughout his carear, Marcel Breuer’s time at Dessau is without question the most interesting phase of his life because it was in Dessau that he developed his bent steel tube furniture and as such started a revolution in furniture design whose influence can still be felt today.
It comes therefore as no surprise that the “Design” part of the exhibition features numerous examples of Breuer’s Work with steel tubing; including the seminal B 3 Wassily Chair in numerous variations. However, in addition to steel tubing the exhibition also features a fascinating collection of his work with wood, plywood and aluminium. A collection which shows just how truly talented Marcel Breuer was.
Marcel Breuer is of course more than Dessau and more than furniture – something made very clear by the “Architecture” section of the exhibition. Displaying models from half a dozen of his projects one gets a wonderful impression for how Breuer interpreted and realised the Bauhaus ethos. And as such contains one or the other surprise for those not familiar with Breuer’s architectural output.
As an exhibition Marcel Breuer – Design and Architecture provides not only a delightful, compact overview of the man and his legacy but also makes wonderfully clear just how much of an injustice it is to limit his work to bent steel tubing.
Marcel Breuer – Design and Architecture can be viewed at Bauhaus Dessau until October 31st 2012.