Bauhaus Berlin


Nazi repression and drastic cutbacks in funding made it almost impossible to work at the Bauhaus in Berlin.


Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin / © Majory Schmolka
Das Gebäude des Bauhauses in der Birkbuschstraße in Berlin-Steglitz, Foto: Howard Dearstyne, 1932.


Due to the repressive political measures of the National Socialists and the drastic cutbacks in funding, only a limited amount of work was possible during the Bauhaus’s last phase in Berlin. After the premises were searched and the classrooms sealed by the police and the SA, the paramilitary branch of the NSDAP, in April 1933, regular teaching activities were no longer possible. Instead, the brief and dramatic Berlin phase led many professors and students to move elsewhere in Germany or to emigrate.

On 30th September 1932, the Bauhaus Dessau was dissolved following the NSDAP’s victory in the municipal elections of 1931. The move to Berlin was organised by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who was the third Bauhaus director from 1930, following on from Walter Gropius and Hannes Meyer. In October 1932, the Bauhaus masters and students resumed their work in an abandoned telephone factory in Berlin-Steglitz. However, the premises had already been searched and sealed by the police and the SA on 11th April 1933. In the process, 32 students were arrested. A reopening would only have been possible under conditions dictated by the political powers. Because these were unacceptable to Mies van der Rohe, the teaching staff dissolved the Bauhaus on 20th July 1933. A commemorative plaque now stands on Birkbuschstraße 49, near the Bauhaus’s last place of activity, which no longer exists.

After the dissolution of the Bauhaus in Berlin, a large number of those who taught and studied at the Bauhaus emigrated contributing greatly to the global dissemination of the Bauhaus concept.


Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin
Bauhaus-Studierendenausweis von Selman Selmanagić, Reproduktion.

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