Bauhaus - What does this mean and how did it influence the world?

by Kristin Firine

The term ‘Bauhaus’ refers to the German art school that fused the bridge between crafts and the fine arts. The Bauhaus had a unique approach to design that had not yet been seen or taught, it was one which sought to combine mass production with individuality in the art world. It created the commercialized concept of everyday function that doesn’t forget about aesthetics. 

Image of Bauhaus school: Curbed 

The Bauhaus school was founded and built by Walter Gropius. At Design Theory we take a lot of inspiration from Bauhaus. It bred the most influential aesthetic for modern design, architecture, and art. Bauhaus developed a profound style in graphic design, architecture, furniture design, industrial design, typography and more. You’ll recognize many of the Bauhaus’ staff on our website. 

The Wassily Chair, 1925, Marcel Breuer. Behance

Built on the principle of simplicity and function, Bauhaus furniture and design featured soft or rounded corners, durable materials, and simple geometric shapes. One of the most iconic relics of Bauhaus is the ‘Wassily Chair.’ This chair was designed by Bauhaus Instructor Marcel Breuer, who was inspired by his own bicycle. Simplifying the concept of a club chair as if the steel used for bicycle handlebars acted as the structure of the furniture. 

Design Theory Wassily chair


Breuer was inspired to create the chair while riding his bicycle – he envisioned taking the tubular steel used for the handlebars and bending it into pieces of furniture. Breuer took the traditional form of an overstuffed club chair and simplified it down until it was just an outline, with a canvas seat, back and arms. Shop this chair on our website, make it your own by mixing materials and fabrics.


Similar is the Laccio table, also by Bauhaus member Marcel Breuer. Similar in shape and material to the ‘Wassily Chair’ this table focused on modularity as it pertained to the function of furniture. The tubular steel Breuer used defined the minimalist and geometric principles of Bauhaus style. 


My Modern Met

Across several locations in Germany and the span of 14 years, the Bauhaus school and design category cultivated painters, architects, textile artists, furniture makers, graphic designers, and other experimental thinkers not so easily classified by the society of the time. Their works have come to define modern art and design for years to come. With the resurgence of form and function, we are proud at Design Theory to honor Bauhaus furniture pieces today and make them accessible to all.

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