press release

Festival Architecture Radical
Bauhaus Festivals Dessau
May 31–June 2, 2019

Is radicalism still valid in our time? Which radical and truly innovative approaches and prototypes are needed in the architecture of today to be oriented towards the future?What are the essential parameters in our time? How far are radicality and functionality still counterpoints? These are the questions the Festival Architecture Radical raises.

Through workshops, lectures and open-space conferences the festival will thrive on an intensive collaboration between architects, students, and the public. The encounters will resemble the playful and experimental character of the historical Bauhaus movement.

Future-oriented architecture

How can architecture be radically reinvented? This is the question the Bauhaus asked themselves exactly one century ago—and it is still of considerable relevance. At the Festival Architecture Radical, the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation will be examining to what extent architectural radicalism remains an pertaining topic in our time. What fundamentals would be necessary today, for a new architecture, that causes a global impact in society?

The historical Bauhaus was working on radical utopia, social visions and social reality. The objective of the Bauhaus in Dessau, as a School of Design, was to renew everyday life through contemporary design. The Bauhaus buildings were therefore more than mere architecture: they represented tangible prototypes of modern life. They amazed and equally shocked the citizens of Dessau at that time.

And today? Bauhaus architecture is frequently only cited within a stylistic context while its motivation and progressive concepts are fading into oblivion. Certain radical aspects, which were newly conceived and realized, are today considered to be the standard. Others were discarded, but many concepts continued to be further developed as they remain modern even 100 years later. This is the focal point of the Festival Architecture Radical.

Temporary office for radical contemporary construction The three-day festival aims to forge a connection between the historical Bauhaus buildings, which in their time anticipated the future of living, and buildings in our time. The Employment Office constructed by Walter Gropius will be transformed into one of the festival headquarters: as the Office for radical contemporary construction. The festival invited ten radical architects to immerse themselves in the spirit of the Bauhaus, and discuss their concepts, and on site installations with 100 international students and the public.

The following architects will participate: atelier le balto (Berlin), Andrej Bernik (Paris), Sam Chermayeff (Berlin), Frida Escobedo (Mexico City), Donatella Fioretti (Berlin), Andrés Jaque (Barcelona / New York), Anapuma Kundoo (Madrid / Pondicherry / Berlin), Jürgen Mayer H. (Berlin) and Philip Ursprung (Zurich), Ippolito Pestellini (Rotterdam), umschichten (Stuttgart)

Architecture Radical is the second of three Bauhaus Festivals in Dessau, in the context of the centenary of the founding of the Bauhaus. Festivals School Fundamental, Architecture Radical and Stage Total deal with pedagogical, architectural, and performative concepts of the Bauhaus from today's point of view in very different ways.

All events are public and can be attended free of charge.

Detailed festival programme here:

Curators: Kathrin Luz, Werner Möller