September 26, 2016
As part of the exhibition The COOP principle. Hannes Meyer and the concept of collective design
Dr Raquel Franklin
Architectural Research Center, Universidad Anáhuac México
co-curator of the exhibition
IN SEARCH OF A HARMONIOUS EXISTENCE: POLITICS, ARCHITECTURE AND PROPAGANDA IN HANNES MEYER’S WORK
In his article “Bauhaus and Society”, Hannes Meyer referred to work as “the search of a harmonious form of existence” . In his personal quest for such harmony, he transited through the most turbulent times and circumstances following his ideological set of values. His political path took him from the Coop experience of his early years in the homeland, Switzerland, to the commitment to communism in the late stages of his life.
Meyer dreamt of a “new world” where architecture was only a means to serve society. He was accused of political engagement at the Bauhaus and served later as a propagandist of Soviet architecture and ideas. In the Soviet Union he was formally trained in Marxism and became in Mexico an ideological mentor to many, mainly in the Taller de Gráfica Popular.
In the framework of the exhibition “The Coop Principle: Hannes Meyer and the Idea of a Collaborative Design”, the talk will intend to review Meyer’s political path and its effect on his architecture.
Dr. Raquel Franklin is the Coordinator of the Architectural Research Center at the Anahuac University Mexico, where she also teaches courses on the History of Twentieth Century Architecture. She is a founding member of the Mexican chapter of DOCOMOMO and was a fellow of the International Museum Program of the Federal Cultural Foundation (Kulturstiftung des Bundes) at the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation (Stiftung Bauhaus Dessau) (2013-2014).