“Bauhausmädels illustrates that the Bauhaus was an experiment deeper, wider, and richer than many historians have suggested, and to forget its radical commitment to profound change is to misunderstand its essentiality.”
“The book reflects much — from the rise of photography as hobby, profession and art form to popular hairstyles (short) and poses. The women’s post-Bauhaus trajectories, many affected by the rise of the Nazis, form a dizzying tracery. Some remained artists, others did not. Either way, learning about them is a gift.”
“In this grand family album, we discover a group of unique trailblazers whose legacy paved the way for women artists after them.”
“Arranged almost like a family photo album, the book captures the spirit of the school’s underrated members.”
“For years almost all attention was given to the leading men of the Bauhaus, but this book forms part of a movement that has sprung up to give its female students much-earned recognition.”
“Most retrospectives focus on the school’s all-male directors, ignoring the critical role that women played in the German school that aimed to unite art, craft, and industry. This long overdue book highlights the contributions of Bauhaus women.”
Bauhausmädels. A Tribute to Pioneering Women Artists
Pioneers of Modernity
A tribute to the Bauhaus’s women artistsCelebrating the centennial of a groundbreaking School of Art and Design, this volume marks the founding of the Bauhaus with a visual exploration of its most underrated members. While the institution provided women with new opportunities in education, along the way, they were faced with unreasonable family expectations, the ambiguous attitude of the faculty and administration, outdated social conventions, and, ultimately, the political repression of the Nazi regime.
Unprecedented in current literature, Bauhausmädels presents 87 artists and artisans through texts and photographic portraits, many published for the very first time. Recent archival discoveries revive the biographies of better-known talents. In the 1920s, the title “Bauhaus girl” expressed a silent admiration for the young women who courageously eluded traditional gender roles to build a different, creative future. These include Marianne Brandt, the first woman to be admitted to the Bauhaus metalworking program whose designs are used by Alessi to this day; Gertrud Arndt who, dissuaded by the faculty from studying architecture, instead shone through her photography and rug design; and Lucia Moholy, who photographed the Bauhaus buildings in iconic shots, but spent the rest of her life trying to retrieve the negatives which were withheld from her. Moreover, the volume reminds us of other women artists whose names, nearly forgotten, also stand for early pioneers of gender equality, refusing to follow the beaten tracks society and their families insisted on.
With almost 400 portrait photographs taken between 1919 and 1933, Bauhausmädels creates a visual impression of the women artists who attended the most progressive art school of the 20th century and, departing from there, often changed the world of art, architecture, design, and even politics. Biographical data sheds light on each artist’s individual struggle, persistence in the face of adversity, and incredible accomplishments. In this grand family album, we discover a group of unique trailblazers whose legacy paved the way for women artists after them.