Haus Beautiful: the Impact of Bauhaus

No other little school had as big an impact on the modern world as the beleaguered Bauhaus


Breuer's tubular steel-and-canvas side chair, 1925-28

It lasted only 14 years, but the bauhaus stamped its own century and this one too. No one would claim that the taste for clean, simplified design that emanated from its classrooms ever became universal, certainly not among the toiling masses the Bauhauslers hoped to speak to. And nobody believes anymore that good design can produce a more virtuous world. But all those steadfast geometric tea sets and tubular steel furnishings drew lines in the collective consciousness. They're still basic to our picture of the modern home--even if we don't happen to live in one.

It's not a monolithic institution we...

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