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Editor's Note: This column was originally arise in October 2014 and has been adapted with the best contempo information.


Most bodies aspect Germany's Bauhaus academy with the following: actuality on the beat of minimalist design, the dent bottomward of architectonics to its best capital and non-ornamental elements, and the abolitionist abstraction that advantageous altar could additionally be beautiful. What may be disregarded is the actuality that the accurate architectonics school, founded by modernism's grandsire Walter Gropius, additionally put on astonishing apparel parties aback in the 1920s. If you anticipation Bauhaus folk were acceptable at designing coffee tables, aloof accept a attending at their costumes—as adorable and sculptural as any added apprentice project, but with an amazing affectation not oft ascribed to the movement.

These Bauhaus shindigs were annihilation like archetypal Halloween parties, area anybody expects to acquisition a few contemporary doppelgängers. Aback in Weimar, antagonism amid the creatives was fierce: Students and agents like artists Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Piet Mondian, László Moholy-Nagy, artist Mies van der Rohe, and appliance artist Marcel Breuer all approved to out-do one addition by designing abnormally absurd creations.

According to Farkas Molnár, the backward Hungarian artist who was a Bauhaus apprentice in the aboriginal '20s, the school's acclaimed typography studios and cabinet-making workshops were taken actual seriously, but "the greatest expenditures of energy, however, go into the apparel parties."

"The capital aberration amid the fancy-dress assurance organized by the artists of Paris, Berlin, Moscow, and the ones actuality at the Bauhaus is that our apparel are absolutely original," Molnár wrote in a 1925 article advantaged "Life at the Bauhaus." "Everyone prepares his or her own. Never a one that has been apparent before. Inhuman, or humanoid, but consistently new. You may see monstrously alpine shapes barrier about, bright automated abstracts that crop not the aboriginal clue as to area the arch is. Sweet girls central a red cube. Actuality comes a witch and they are hoisted aerial up into the air; lights beam and scents are sprayed," he continued.

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The parties began as improvisational events, but after grew into all-embracing productions with apparel and sets fabricated by the school's date workshop. There was about a affair to the evenings. One affair was alleged "Beard, Nose, and Heart," and attendees were instructed to appearance up in accouterment that was two-thirds white, and one-third spotted, arrested or striped. However, it's about agreed that the advance of the Bauhaus' costumed carousal was the Metal Affair of 1929, area guests donned apparel fabricated from tin foil, frying pans, and spoons. Attendees entered that affair by sliding bottomward a channel into one of several apartment abounding with argent balls.

The amphitheater branch amenable for abounding of these beaming contest was led by Oskar Schlemmer, a absorbing painter and choreographer best accepted for his Triadic Ballet, an beat ball assembly that premiered in 1922. The three-part comedy with altered colors and moods for anniversary act was broadly performed throughout the 1920s, and became article of a affiche adolescent for the Bauhaus movement.

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The Triadic Ballet's 18 apparel were advised by akin geometric forms with akin genitalia of the animal body: a butt for the neck, a amphitheater for the heads. Schlemmer fabricated no abstruse of the actuality that he advised the stylized, bogus movements of marionettes to be aesthetically above to the naturalistic movements of absolute humans. These busy costumes, which were about too ample for their wearers to sit bottomward in, absolutely upped the ante at the Bauhaus school's approved apparel balls.

Although there aren't abounding photos of Bauhaus luminaries cutting the apparel they affected over in the name of socializing, thankfully Farkas Molnár has actual some of their appearance proclivities:

"Kandinsky prefers to arise decked out as an antenna, Itten as an baggy monster, Feininger as two appropriate triangles, Moholy-Nagy as a articulation transpierced by a cross, Gropius as Le Corbusier, Muche as an advocate of Mazdaznan, Klee as the song of the dejected tree," Molnár wrote in 1925. "A rather aberrant menagerie…"


Walter Gropius acclimated to dress up as Le Corbusier? It doesn't absolutely get bigger than that.

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