Posts Tagged ‘Bauhaus


bauhaus simplicity

P1180402How are the former offices of the ECB? Like this…


Clean international style

P1180009Clean German design. Since 1967. When one lives in the UK, one forgets how beautiful are the clean lines of bauhaus and how much it is still inspiring architecture, design, urban planning in Germany. It’s not coldness. It is pleasure for the eyes.

(please note the fire brigade code on the corner of the canopy – form follows function, but safety comes first)


switched-on bauhaus


An ordinary switch. It brings me back to fond memories. This time, six years ago, I was checking out plugs and switches in our newly refurbished Altbau apartment in Berlin Schoeneberg. The paint was just drying on the walls, that gray hue looking fabulous under the Winter sky. MeinMann was in Rome and I phoned him excited, in the middle a faint hint of Polish cigarette smoke in our flat “It’s coming out really nice! It’s just as we imagined it!”.

Christmas was close, and full of dreams about our Berlin home. It would be a Roman Christmas, as no furniture was in the flat yet, and water and power were the only amenities. But our switches were all in place, all white plastic and very standardised, and from the following year onwards, our Christmas may be white and in Berlin. I had affection for those switches. When you buy switches, it’s about your home. It’s cheap, yet it’s precious.

Months before, during the Summer, our architect Benedetto – bauhaus-aficionado as we are – gave his rule of thumb: “Look at the beauty of the ordinary, utilitarian switches. Aren’t they fabulous? Form which follows function. No frills. No useless decoration. For me, switches are the acid test. If a landlord – or most frequently, a landlady – starts fiddling around decorative, themed, apricot-hued, ceramic-clad, glass-rimmed switches: that’s it. I know it. This is a client I do not want to work with”.

Stay foolish, stay bauhaus…

Continue reading ‘switched-on bauhaus’


something beautiful

plakat poetry(1)

Blimey…the world is full of perturbing news. Still, there’s beauty to be discovered. And tonight I share some of it. Here. Continue reading ‘something beautiful’


Sidelined sideboard takes central stage again

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Grooming an old piece of furniture, using wax and wool cloth to erase the years spent on the sidelines, is a nice feeling. Wood is a live material and, like a cat, when stroked it glows…

This Franz Ehrlich Deutsche Werkstätte sideboard* could have been a silent witness of political struggle in a SED office in Leipzig. Or it casted a prominent role in an Internhotel Astoria flagship room in Dresden, looking good to non-communist bloc business leaders given the propaganda tour of the glorious DDR achievements.

Inside the first drawer there is a shadow left by a rectangular, A4 object – if not the uniquitous bible by the Gideons, what would the standard bedside comfort book have been back in DDR times – maybe Das Kapital? or some Honecker instant-book?

Now the same drawer hosts an already vintage-looking aluminium Mac laptop, an Apple oldie keen in managing our movies archive during its retirement years. We’re planning the next vintage, and stick to our bauhaus credo.

*Modul der „Ergänzungsfähigen Anbaumöbel“ Typ 602 der Deutschen Werkstätten Hellerau, 1957- Die Serie repräsentierte vor allem in den 1960er-Jahren den „skandinavischen Stil“: Zurückhaltend, modern, schmucklos und doch warm im Ausdruck, modular und daher für Neubauwohnungen geeignet, gehörte sie zu den Klassikern dieser Zeit


Dessous Dessau…

Who knows if this Winter we will manage to do a pilgrimage to functional Dessau and baroque Dresden?


La Marianne

Things to do in Berlin: go and check out the bauhaus museum, 10 years after our first visit. An injection of Marianne Brandt aesthetics is urgently needed.

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