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Hannes Meyer

Berlin, Germany
1 of 2

Hans Emil Meyer called Hannes Meyer (November 18th, 1889 - July 19th, 1954) was a Swiss architect and urbanist and the second director of the Bauhaus in Dessau from 1928 to 1930. Meyer was appointed head of the Bauhaus architecture department when it was established in April 1927. Meyer, a convinced Marxist, had a radical functionalist viewpoint. He claimed that architecture is not about form, style or design but had to function as a system for the harmonious development of society.

During his tenure, the school received its two most significant building commissions, both of which still stand: five apartment buildings in the city of Dessau, and the headquarters of the Federal School of the German Trade Unions (ADGB) in Bernau. The school turned its first profit under his leadership in 1929.

But Meyer's views also led to great discussions, particularly after he became director of the Bauhaus on Gropius's resignation in February 1928. He tightened the Bauhaus program around architecture and industrial design, forcing the resignations of Herbert Bayer and Marcel Breuer, and other figures. In the context of the increasingly explosive political atmosphere of the Weimar Republic, Meyer's vocal communism and his encouragement of the Communist student organization in the Bauhaus became a threat to the very existence of the school and he was dismissed in 1930. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe became his successor.

Meyer then went to Moscow forming a group called the "Left Column" which worked on architectural and urban planning projects guided by socialist-utopian ideals.

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Berlin, Germany
roberts, April 4th, 2017
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