Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master

On view: November 16, 2019- April 5, 2020

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master marks the centenary of the founding of the Bauhaus in Weimar, Germany, in 1919 and features rare works by the groundbreaking 20th-century graphic designer Herbert Bayer. On view in the second-floor permanent collection galleries from Nov. 16 through April 5, 2020, the exhibition follows Bayer’s role as both student and teacher at the Bauhaus, as well as his illustrious career in the United States following his 1938 emigration.

Born in Austria and active in Germany and the U.S., Bayer (1900–1985) was a student and teacher at the Bauhaus, where he helped define a new language of graphic design suited to modern life. Charting his stylistic shifts and theoretical contributions, Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master highlights Bayer’s interest in typography and photography, design theory, information design, fashion and beauty, and poster design, as well as his corporate work.

Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus Master will feature information graphics, books, advertising, posters, ephemera, and magazine layouts for diverse clients. Many works on view will be drawn from a trove of more than 500 pieces documenting Bayer’s career in the U.S., recently acquired to the Cooper Hewitt collection through a gift from the Taub Foundation. Key works from the Bauhaus period are on loan from the collection of Merrill C. Berman. 

The exhibition is organized by Ellen Lupton, senior curator of contemporary design, Cooper Hewitt.

The Merrill C. Berman Collection has loaned over 40 works to this exhibition. Below is a selection of works loaned: