Research and Projects
The research activities at the Chair of Design and Housing challenge the conditions and ambitions for design work. Projects at the Chair revolve around the architecture of housing and extend this subject to encompass additional contexts. They are based on thematic issues that span several years and internationally oriented teaching research projects as well as the cooperative implementation of a research project financed with third party funding. The mutual understanding of research questions and design themes leads to different formats. The Chair of Design and Housing publishes an ongoing series of booklets, regularly takes part in symposia and exhibitions such as the "summaery" held annually at the university, has curated exhibitions in its own right and produced a film.
Notes on Architecture (NOA)
The English-language Notes on Architecture series was conceived in 2017 to publish selected projects which are being developed at the Chair. It consists of a loose array of publications that follow an overarching design concept and contains different but related content and formats. Five issues have been published so far, including Tokyo Research Project - Display (NOA 1), Tokyo Research Project - Daybook (NOA 2), Some Investigations in Collective Form (NOA 3), From Elements of Domesticity to Forms of Community - Jakobsplan (NOA 5) and Two Houses - Texts (NOA 7), and three further issues are in progress. An exhibition dedicated to the Notes on Architecture series will be held at the Architektur Galerie Berlin in February 2021 and is funded by the Kreativfonds of Bauhaus-Universität Weimar. The publication of the series both digitally and Open Access, is being planned in cooperation with the university library of Bauhaus-University Weimar. The booklets are designed in a continuous cooperation with bus.group. The issues shown in the preview can be viewed and bought here.
The Synesthesia Scenery exhibition curated by Taishi Watanabe, associate professor at Waseda University Tokyo, was organised on invitation by the Chair of Design and Housing and will be shown in spring 2021 at the Bauhaus.Atelier on the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar campus. The exhibition develops a different focus for all of its stations at Aalto University in Helsinki (2020), Bauhaus-Universität Weimar (2020), Technische Universität Berlin (2021) and the Finnish Embassy in Tokyo (2021), and is accompanied by a separate publication for each. The catalogue for the exhibition at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar contains a text by Verena von Beckerath with photographs by Robert Elert and Andrew Alberts.
How to Live Together
The Wie zusammen leben project began in autumn 2019, with the participation of Till Hoffmann and Hanna Schlösser, by investigating living spaces in Weimar, which we now experience as exhibition environments. The consideration of these interiors, removed from their original context, took place in two parallel and corresponding formats. Five buildings of the Klassik Stiftung Weimar were looked at - Schiller's house, Goethe's house, Goethe's garden house, the Nietzsche Archive and Haus Hohe Pappeln. While second year students completed their drawings in October/November, the photographer Andrew Alberts worked from October 2019 to February 2020. The collection comprises 28 drawings and 47 photographs. An exhibition and a publication in the NOA series are being planned.
Hudson Valley Ecologies
The internationally oriented Hudson Valley Ecologies teaching research project, with the participation of Till Hoffmann, considers the reciprocal relation between city and country, and so ties in with the Chair's previous projects on the urban periphery of Berlin and Rome,in addition to a project on the Schwarzatal summer retreat in Thuringia. The Hudson Valley extends for several hundred kilometres north of Manhattan and is of high economic, environmental and cultural value for New York City and the towns, villages and landscape regions along the Hudson River. Collective and individual research and design themes are identified in the course of the project and in cooperation with Hudson Valley Initiative at GSAPP, Columbia University, New York. The project is based on several interconnected teaching formats, including a seminar, an excursion to New York and the Hudson Valley in October 2019 and a design studio module in the winter semester 2019/20. An exhibition is planned in New York in spring 2021.
The Two Houses project examines the interrelationship between the Bauhaus and Japan by taking the example of two houses in the suburbs of Tokyo, designed by Iwao Yamawaki (1898-1987) and Bunzo Yamaguchi (1902-1978) in the 1930s and 1940s, and follows on from the Tokyo Research Project teaching research project. It comprises the Two Houses (2019) film, which was made with the participation of Niklas Fanelsa, Momoko Yasaka and Maximilian von Zepelin and in collaboration with the artist Jens Franke, in addition to an exhibition and a publication with the title Two Houses - Texts in the NOA series. The film and the exhibition were shown in April/May 2019 at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar and in October 2019 at the Goethe-Institut Tokyo and at Atelier M/ Migishi Atelier. Further screenings took place at ARCH+ Salon and as part of the Roundkino series at Technische Universität Berlin. In August 2020, the film could be seen online for eight days in the course of Kino Siemensstadt - Programm #12, a project by Scharaun - interdisciplinary project space for art and architecture, curated by Olaf Stüber and Jaro Straub. The film and the exhibition were made possible by funding of the Thüringer Staatskanzlei, the Alumni office at Bauhaus-Universität Weimarand the Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (ifa), and sponsored by the Goethe-Institut and the German Embassy in Tokyo, under whose aegis the screening took place.
Three Rooms, Kitchen, Hall, Bathroom
The Drei Zimmer, Küche, Diele, Bad project has been running at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar since 2017 in collaboration with Barbara Schönig, Chair of Urban Planning, and with the participation of Jessica Christoph and Carsten Praum. In the course of an experimental and interdisciplinary project spanning several years, concrete and ideational questions concerning the future of housing are asked, debated and researched, using the transformation of an existing apartment in a building complex from the 1920s in Weimar as an example. Students on the bachelor and master courses in architecture and urbanism started off with a planning and design project, in which they initially transformed a vacant apartment into a working, discussion and exhibition space for the duration of one semester. Based on the students' work, concepts for the conversion, awarding and use of the apartment were developed. A few, yet fundamental interventions created a flexible layout that linked the apartment on the raised ground floor to the back garden and provided for different forms of live and work concepts as well as communal activities in the neighbourhood. A two-year accompanying research project, which is to study the appropriation and development of the apartment, kicked off when the tenants moved in at the end of 2019. The project is linked to different guest contributions and particularly the work of photographer Andrew Alberts, whose images document the transformation of the apartment. The research project is based on the cooperation of Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, Thüringer Aufbaubank and the Weimarer Wohnstätte municipal housing firm. It is under the aegis of the Thüringer Ministerium für Infrastruktur und Landwirtschaft.
Tokyo Research Project
The Tokyo Research Project, a one-year teaching research project which was conducted with the participation of Niklas Fanelsa,was the first internationally oriented project based on a combination of different educational formats to be centred around a study trip to Japan. The assignment is based on the consideration of research approaches practiced at Japanese universities and architecture schools and current contributions to residential architecture in Japan. In preparation for the trip, the students initially considered six thematic research questions. The results were shown in 2017 during the "summaery" at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar and presented at Waseda University in Tokyo in September 2017. The encounters and the insights gained during this study trip informed the design projects for Berlin's periphery in the winter semester 2017/18. The teaching research project was documented in two publications, Tokyo Research Project - Display and Tokyo Research Project - Daybook with photographs by Anne Groß and concluded with the Some Investigations in Collective Form exhibition at the Architektur Galerie Berlin in summer 2018. A catalogue with the same title was published in August 2020 within the NOA series. The book "Idee Inhalt Form - Beiträge zur Gestaltung der Gegenwart" (Weimar 2019),published by Winfried Speitkamp and Claudia Weinreich, contains an essay by Verena von Beckerath with photographs by Iwao Yamawaki and Andrew Alberts in addition to stills from the Two Houses film, which reflects on the teaching research project. The Tokyo Research Project was funded by the Anschubfonds Bauhaus100 and the Kreativfonds der Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.
From Elements of Domesticity to Forms of Community
The Von Elementen des Wohnens zu Formen von Gemeinschaft project with the participation of Jessica Christoph, Till Hoffmann und Henning Michelsen, comprises a research segment within three design projects and were accompanied by a series of lectures. The focus of the project was on analysis by drawing and so examined houses from different periods in Weimar against the backdrop of their model character - Haus Am Horn (Georg Muche, 1923), Jakobsplan students' residence (Anita Bach, 1970-1972) and a Wilhelminian residential building from 1873 in Bauhausstrasse 1. The Chair participated with large format drawings of Haus Am Horn in the "Artefaktedes Entwerfens und ihre Wissenspraktiken - Skizzieren, Zeichnen, Skripten, Modellieren" conference in November 2017 at TU Berlin and in the exhibition with the same title at the Architecture Museum at Technische Universität Berlin in February 2018. The 4. Forum des Netzwerks Architekturwissenschaft sought to link design aspects with theoretical issues and interrelate them reciprocally. A publication by the network is in preparation. The Chair was able to contribute to the 2nd annual conference of GRK 2227 – Collecting Loss in November 2018 with the Erinnerungen, Abstraktionen, Idealisierungen exhibition at the university library at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar and with an accompanying publication in the NOA series. The exhibition showed drawings of the Jakobsplan students' residence in Weimar, two photographs by Andrew Alberts and a display case with research documents and work by the architect Anita Bach (*1927). The assignment on Bauhausstrasse 1 considered the issue of how historic buildings from the Wilhelminian period can be initially deconstructed and subsequently reinterpreted to accommodate low-threshold and communally used living, working and presentation spaces for artists. The results of the study, which was conducted in cooperation with the Verein Bauhaus Eins Weimar e.V., were presented in the "Coming Home" exhibition in autumn 2019.