Wilhelm Wagenfeld’s timeless and stylish products are greatly admired, not only by art lovers. But can you tell which design is a genuine Wagenfeld – and which isn’t? Find the answers here in our interactive quiz in celebration of the exhibition “Craft Becomes Modern” at the Bauhaus Dessau, a prologue to 100 years of Bauhaus
It remains one of the classics of art and design history: The legendary Wagenfeld lamp, the poetically named W24. This was designed by Wilhelm Wagenfeld in 1924 when he was still a young Bauhaus student, at the behest of his master László Moholy-Nagy. On 15 April 2017, its creator would have been 117 years old.
Which of the two lamps pictured above was actually created by Wilhelm Wagenfeld?
Chancellor’s cutlery: made by a Bauhausler?
As we know, parties were a frequent and fundamental part of life at the Bauhaus. But back then, the cutlery on the tables of the students and masters did not come from the workshops of the school. It is thanks to pioneers like Wilhelm Wagenfeld that the design of cutlery in the postwar era became a lucrative field of experimentation for industrial designers.
In the early 1950s one of these cutlery sets served not only Wagenfeld, but soon half of the USA.
Raise the glass curtain for tea!
With his world-famous teapot Wilhelm Wagenfeld successfully realised the fundamental Bauhaus idea – form follows function – in a design both elegant and practical. And much as the architects of the Bauhaus rendered the interior of the building visible from the outside, the trained silversmith placed the hot drink in the spotlight by using a transparent glass form.
Is Wagenfeld’s teapot angular or round?
Of mischief-makers and condiment sets
At the Bauhaus, tableware was long perceived as a classic handcrafted product. It is therefore hardly surprising that neither the ceramic workshop nor Wilhelm Wagenfeld made the leap from Weimar to Dessau with the Bauhaus.
Both of the pictured sets became genuine bestsellers shortly after their appearance – but just one of them stood on the desk of Wilhelm Wagenfeld.
Has all this good design put you in the mood for more? The supporting programme for the exhibition “Craft becomes Modern. The Bauhaus in the Making” enables you to experience a metal designer’s production process at first hand: A demonstration by the Leizpig-based jewellery designer Erika Schäfter shows how silver and other metals can be shaped, stamped and worked.
The designer was the first post-war apprentice to study (1955–1958) under Alfred Schäfter, master of works at the Bauhaus Dessau. The demonstration will be followed by a talk with the head of the Bauhaus Dessau Archive, Lutz Schöbe.
International Museum Day
Sunday, 21 May 2017
1 – 3 p.m.
Illustration for all drawings above by Wilhelm Wagenfeld:
Drawing: Stan Hema, Berlin / © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2017