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Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis

Event date
16 September 2019 - 9 November 2019 (10am to 6pm)
Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis

Exhibition Dates: 16 September - 9 November 2019
Private View: Thursday 24 October, 6 - 9pm
Monday - Friday: 10am - 6pm
Saturday: 12 - 4pm

Curated by Professor Daniel Sturgis

Artists: Juan Bolivar, David Diao, Liam Gillick, Interactive Media Foundation & Filmtank with Artificial Rome, Maria Laet, Andrea Medjesi-Jones, Ad Minoliti, Sadie Murdoch, Judith Raum, Helen Robertson, Eva Sajovic, SAVVY Contemporary, Schroeter und Berger, Alexis Teplin, Ian Whittlesea

Camberwell Space is pleased to present the exhibition Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis exploring how contemporary practitioners have been drawn to the social, utopian and transgressive aspects of Bauhaus history. The exhibition will be part of the OurHaus festival, which coincides with Bauhaus 100, the international celebration of the famous Bauhaus design school’s centenary.

The diverse collection of artworks presented in this exhibition will investigate the ways in which artists today are reframing the Bauhaus’s modernist legacy as one which includes political and subjective resistance. As such, Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis addresses how artistic legacies intersect with contemporary concerns through understanding that the Bauhaus was a complicated interweaving of different positions and personalities and never a truly unified project.

Through archival research, the Berlin based artist Judith Raum will present a series of new films which examine the position and personalities of Bauhaus artists such as Lilly Reich, Otti Berger and Gunta Stölzl who, as women, were limited to expressing their creativity in the weaving workshop.

The Anti Faschistische Aktion logo of Bauhaus student Max Gebhard and Max Keilson is represented by the Weimar based Schroeter und Berger in a politicised repositioning which aims to claim the logo as a classic piece of Bauhaus design through its contemporary international reach.

The importance of the transgressive and performative aspect of Bauhaus pedagogy is referenced in the works of the London-based US painter Alexis Teplin who employs costumed characters to perform dialogues derived from fictions and historical modernist texts to animate her abstract compositions.

This exhibition is part of OurHaus, which brings together a series of international speakers for talks, workshops, exhibitions and performances at Camberwell College of Arts and Central Saint Martins (CSM), University of the Arts London (UAL) from 21 – 25 October 2019.

The festival represents the culmination of a year-long pedagogic project at both colleges. This has included Camberwell Fine Art students being commissioned by the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation Open Stage to create a series of new performances in response to Xanti Schawinsky’s ‘Spectodrama’ for the opening of the Bauhaus Dessau Museum, and CSM students working with the BBC for the programme Bauhaus Rules.

UAL students and Erasmus partners in Leipzig have revisited the Metières Course with support from Fritz Hortsman from the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation in the US and UAL technicians have been investigating how Josef Albers’ colour course could be interpreted in a darkroom setting.

For further information, interviews or images contact:

Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis runs from 16 September – 9 November 2019 at Camberwell Space, Camberwell College of Arts, 45 - 65 Peckham Road, London SE5 8UF. The exhibition will tour to the Bauhaus University in Weimer, Germany in 2020.

As part of Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis exhibition:
Tuesday 1 October at 6pm: Artist Eva Sajovic will stage a performative discussion.
Tuesday 22 October at 7.30pm: Artist Alexis Teplin will stage a performance during the opening of the OurHaus festival
Thursday 24 October 6 - 9pm: Private View

OurHaus festival runs from 21 – 25 October 2019, Camberwell College of Arts and Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London. The festival will encompass talks, symposia, performances and workshops across the two college sites over three days.

Highlights will include a keynote lecture by Dr Elizabeth Otto (22 October), Bauhaus Educators Symposium, organised in collaboration with Outreach at Camberwell, Chelsea and Wimbledon (23 October), the Bauhaus: Utopia in Crisis Symposium (24 October) featuring speakers Judith Raum, Sadie Murdoch, Grant Watson, Sebastian Helm and many others, as well as the Unser Haus build, and workshop programme (25 October), led by students and Tim Meara and Lucy Alexander (Foundation at Central Saint Martins).

Bauhaus Dessau Foundation Open Stage takes place from 11 – 15 September 2019.
Over the past year, Camberwell’s BA Fine Art Painting staff have collaborated with students across Fine Art courses to develop a series of performances in response to Xanti Schawinsky’s seminal performance-installation ‘Play, Life, Illusion’ (1936). The performances will be staged in September as part of Open Stage, a key strand of the official centenary performance programme entitled Festival Stage TOTAL which will launch the new Bauhaus Museum, Dessau, Germany. Following the festival, their performances will be re-staged at Camberwell College of Arts on the 24 October 2019 as part of OurHaus festival.

Full listings information and booking for OurHaus.

Image: David Diao, Conversation, 2018, acrylic on canvas, 117 x 176 cm.
Courtesy the Artist and Tanya Leighton Gallery.

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