(November 2, 2015)
Bauhaus inspired design exhibition opens November 7 at Centenary's Meadows Museum
Photomontage cover by Herbert Bayer for Bauhaus: Zeitschrift für Bau und Gestaltung (Magazine for Building and Design), Dessau, Germany: 1928.
SHREVEPORT, LA — The Meadows Museum of Art at Centenary College will host "Supposed to Be the New World: Bauhaus Books, Bauhaus People, Bauhaus Culture in America 1925—1955" from November 7, 2015 through January 31, 2016. Guest curators Randall Ross and Molly McCombs will present a selection of design books and ephemera tracing the influence of teachers and ideas from the Bauhaus's German inception in 1919 through its later American incarnations. Original works by Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, László Moholy-Nagy, Josef Albers, and Herbert Bayer will be displayed.
On Saturday November 7, the public is cordially invited to a free reception at the Meadows from 5-7 p.m., with food and drink provided by the Friends of the Meadows Museum. Curator Randall Ross will give a gallery talk on the joys and challenges of collecting at 6:15 p.m.
A Josef Albers poem inspired this exhibition: "To distribute material possessions is to divide them; to distribute spiritual possessions is to multiply them." Over seventy-five original Bauhaus and Bauhaus-influenced manuscripts and documents will be displayed in three galleries. Gallery One explores the origins of the Bauhaus in 1919 Weimar, its 1925 relocation to Dessau, and the dispersal of students and faculty during the rise of Nazism. Gallery Two shows the assimilation of the European immigrants into American culture and society. Gallery Three presents the wide-ranging influence of the Bauhaus idea, including examples of International Style architecture in Shreveport.
In 2009, Ross and McCombs moved from Austin to Shreveport to fulfill their dream of living in an architect-designed, mid-century modern house. The wide-ranging influence of the Bauhaus is still evidenced today in Shreveport's modern architecture; the exhibition will include a sampling of local International Style buildings. Ross and McCombs have documented Shreveport's impressive modern architectural heritage on their Facebook business page: http://on.fb.me/1LHCd2q.
Ross and McCombs believe that the Bauhaus and its legacy are relevant to anyone involved in creating, communicating, organizing, or educating. As artists and teachers, the Bauhaüslers created a philosophy that bridged technology and artistry, in hopes of making the modern world a better place. If they didn't succeed in that, they did succeed in setting new standards of artistic excellence.
Dr. Jenifer K. Ward, Centenary's Provost and Dean, will discuss their legacy in her free public lecture "The Bauhaus as Model for Progressive, Integrative, and Immersive Education" on January 13, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.
Ross and McCombs work together as modernism101.com, an on-line resource specializing in rare and unusual design books and periodicals. They explain, "The Bauhaus has held a special place in our hearts since we toured Walter Gropius's house in Lincoln, Massachusetts in 1999. We are thrilled to share our passion for the Bauhaus through this museum exhibition."
The Meadows Museum of Art is located on the campus of Centenary College of Louisiana at 2911 Centenary Boulevard in Shreveport, Louisiana. The Museum is free and open to the public Tuesdays through Fridays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. For more information or to schedule field trips, call the Museum at 318.869.5040, or visit www.centenary.edu/meadows.