The architecture and design legacy of the Bauhaus informs a current exhibition of installation, design, video, and digital works co-organized and presented by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) and the Mies van der Rohe Society at the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT).
The exhibition, “Learning Modern,” is on view through Jan. 9, 2010, in the art institute’s Sullivan Galleries, 33 South State St., Chicago. The galleries constitute a vast exhibition space housed in an architectural landmark, Louis Sullivan's former Carson Pirie Scott department store.
As well as recent and site-specific works by such emerging and established artists and designers as Angela Ferreira, Andrea Fraser, Walter Hood, Narelle Jubelin, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle, Kay Rosen, Staffan Schmidt, and Catherine Yass, the exhibition features such architectural experiments as Thom Faulders's The Ames Room Project (2009) based an optical demonstration from 1946, and Ken Isaacs's Knowledge Box (1962/2009), seen here for the first time since the early 1960s, when the cover of Life magazine heralded it as a revolutionary new multi-media environment for learning.
“It is fitting that the legacy of the Bauhaus be weighed in Chicago, where László Moholy-Nagy came in 1937 and Mies van der Rohe, a year later," said Mary Jane Jacob, SAIC executive Director of exhibitions and organizer of the exhibition. "The School of Art Institute and the Illinois Institute of Technology bring a unique pedagogical perspective to the process as well, for our schools are inheritors of the Bauhaus workshop model, which has influenced the way art and design are taught across the globe.”
Justine Jentes, Director of the Mies van der Rohe Society at IIT, adds: "This exhibition coincides with the Bauhaus at 90 and the Burnham Plan at 100 to reengage with modernism's ideals for a better world and the legacy of the modern as more than a style, but, rather, as a way of living and learning."
Exterior restorations of two landmark buildings designed by Mies were detailed in the August-September issue of the Journal of Architectural Coatings (JAC), in an article titled “Mies,modernism, and metals.”