Bauhaus Now

Charles Landry, Chris Murray, Darran Anderson, Sunand Prasad, Jana Revedin, Michiel Schwarz, Rhiannon Corcoran, Miatta Fahnbulleh, Simon Güntner, Ania Pilipenko, Finn Williams, Cecilia Wong, Kathy McArdle and Marleen Stikker

Description Details

100 years on from the founding of the original, can we reimagine the Bauhaus for 2019? Our interactive, provocative day of dialogue and stimulation will bring together diverse expertise from art to architecture, psychiatry to economics and will ask; had the Bauhaus not been closed down by the Nazis, what would it be doing now for cities and their citizens?

Would Bauhaus have grown from working on individual buildings and objects, to addressing the challenges of whole places, towns and cities, using radical interdisciplinary methods; a ‘Placehaus’?

The answers depend not only on exploring the Bauhaus legacy, but also on understanding the urban challenges of today, asking how they differ or are similar to those of 1919, and how the energy of our current zeitgeist can be harnessed for transformational solutions. The three sessions address how me might recreate a Bauhaus-style approach to practically help cities now.

In 2019 we face our own systemic challenges that cannot be addressed by a ‘business as usual’ approach, and our zeitgeist perhaps reflects that of 1919 through a desire for a major transition, politically, economically and socially, as we grapple with technological complexity and learn to live with difference.

The first session (10:00-12:00) will look at the forces that emerged from the zeitgeist of 1919, how these led to the Bauhaus, what the forces acting on us in cities are today and how the energies of these can be captured and directed toward new solutions. Keynote speakers Michiel Schwarz and Jana Revedin will join Simon Güntner (sociologist and social housing expert), Charles Landry, Chris Murray, and Sunand Prasad (architect and former president of RIBA) to discuss the importance of the Bauhaus across art forms. They will look at its importance to the city in particular, asking, 100 years on how well have we done at city-making based on the Bauhaus legacy – for better and worse – and what is left to do?

The second session (12:45-14:15) will examine the case for a Bauhaus 2019, and whether this can be described as Placehaus. The panellists will open up the debate on where the Bauhaus might have gone next, including its growing association with psychologists, sociologists and important societal issues like diversity. They look at what a Bauhaus reinvented for 2019 might consist of, what its founding principles would be, the issues it would seek to tackle and methods it might employ. What would the creation of Placehaus require, and who might be involved? Following the panel discussion, in a series of short presentations, speakers will briefly discuss how a Bauhaus-style interdisciplinary approach might be applied to five of the biggest issues facing cities today.

Speakers in this session include: Rhiannon Corcoran (Professor of Psychology and Public Mental Health, University of Liverpool; What Works Centre for Wellbeing; and Centre for Urban Design and Mental Health), Miatta Fahnbulleh (CEO of New Economics Foundation), Simon Güntner, Charles Landry, Ania Pilipenko (Head of Holzmarkt Cooperative Berlin), Michiel Schwarz, Marleen Stikker (Waag and Digital City), Finn Willams (CEO of Public Practice) and Cecilia Wong (Professor of Spatial Planning, Manchester University).

In the third session (14:30-16:30), the audience will take part in a series of small discussion groups with experts to look at a series of urban challenges through the lens of Bauhaus. How can Bauhaus principles be applied to 2019 issues of housing, transport, climate change, diversity, community trust, consultation and engagement? Workshop outcomes will feed into the final panel, where the speakers – Darran Anderson (author of Imaginary Cities), Kathy McArdle (British Council), Jana Revedin and Marleen Stikker – will summarise the findings from the day and look at how these might be taken forward.

Image credit: Melanie Kelly

Please note: one ticket includes admission to all three Bauhaus Now events on 17 October.

Due to another commitment, Anna Lisa Boni will no longer be able to attend this event.


Book online or in person at Watershed Box Office or on Tel: 0117 927 5100 Mon – Fri from 09:00 and Sat & Sun from 10:00.

Concessions apply to Full Time Students, Job Seekers Allowance, Incapacity Benefit claimants, over 60s and disabled people. Visitors who require an assistant may bring a companion free of charge. To book a free companion ticket please mention this at time of booking.

Events start punctually and, out of consideration to other audience members and speakers, our policy is not to admit latecomers.

We endeavour to hold events in venues that are accessible to all. Watershed’s cinemas and event spaces are all located on the first floor which is accessible via the lift located in the main entrance foyer at Box Office. Once on the first floor there is level access to all areas. The venue has a hearing loop system. If you have specific access concerns it is advisable to contact the venue direct.

We sometimes film and photograph events. Please let us know if you do not wish to be filmed or photographed.

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