Tate Britain

The Bauhaus and Britain

Ben Nicholson OM, ‘June 1937 (painting)’ 1937
Ben Nicholson OM, June 1937 (painting) 1937. Tate. © Angela Verren Taunt 2019. All rights reserved, DACS

Explore the connections between the progressive Bauhaus art school and the visual arts in Britain in the 1930s

This display celebrates the centenary of the founding of the Bauhaus. The Bauhaus opened in Weimar, Germany, in 1919. It aimed to promote art for a modern world and demonstrate its use to society. To do so, it sought to integrate disciplines including the fine arts, architecture, craft, graphic design and photography. International communities of artists, designers and students embraced collaborative ways of working. They explored new materials, methods and media.

In 1933, National Socialist policies in Germany caused the Bauhaus to close. Many artists associated with the school came to Britain in search of safety and work. British artists with similar interests to those of the Bauhaus welcomed their émigré colleagues. Some key Bauhaus figures went on to the United States, opening the New Bauhaus in Chicago in 1937.

The Bauhaus school was to have a profound effect on modern art in Britain. This display shows a variety of work produced by both Bauhaus and British artists. It highlights their personal relationships and shared concerns. This selection of artworks and objects reveals the creative results of these interactions.

Curated by Rachel Rose Smith, with Elizabeth Darling, Robert Sutton and Michael White

Dame Barbara Hepworth, ‘Ball, Plane and Hole’ 1936
Dame Barbara Hepworth
Ball, Plane and Hole 1936
© Bowness
Ben Nicholson OM, ‘circa 1936 (sculpture)’ c.1936
Ben Nicholson OM
circa 1936 (sculpture) c.1936
© Angela Verren Taunt 2019. All rights reserved, DACS
László Moholy-Nagy, ‘K VII’ 1922
László Moholy-Nagy
K VII 1922


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