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Bauhaus 100

Bauhaus, the modernist art school that started in Germany in 1919, eventually found a somewhat unlikely second home in Aspen. 100 years after its formation, Aspen and groups throughout the Roaring Fork Valley will come together to celebrate its legacy and discuss its future

Herbert Bayer, Ski in Aspen poster. Denver Art Museum Collection, Gift of the Estate of Herbert Bayer

One of the leading figures of Bauhaus, Herbert Bayer was a student and a teacher at the Bauhaus and was considered one of the last of the Bauhaus Masters.

Relocating to Aspen in 1946 at the invitation of Walter and Elizabeth Paepcke to design the Aspen Institute, Bayer would go on to play a key role in transforming Aspen, partly by encouraging modern architecture.

Bayer, while the leading figure, was by no means alone in encouraging Aspen to adopt Bauhaus aesthetics. Photographer Ferenc Berko, who was also a student at the Bauhaus, was also part of the Bauhaus-inspired metamorphosis of Aspen.

Photo: Anderson Park / Aspen Meadows

In addition to the 40-acre Aspen Institute campus, Bayer’s work can be seen in two of Aspen’s most iconic structures, the Wheeler Opera House and Hotel Jerome.

In Denver, a Bayer piece that is relatively well known, even if it goes by a more colloquial name, is his 85-foot “Articulated Wall,” known to many Denverites as the French fry sculpture.


See Herbert Bayer's timeline here


Bayer and Bauhaus had such an impact on Aspen that the city of Aspen and the Roaring Fork Valley have come together to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the short-lived art school with a series of events to celebrate its impact on Aspen and reignite the creative power that began a century ago.

Numerous local organizations will also join in the celebration. The Bauhaus festivities kick off in January and continue through August and include lectures, seminars and tours of the Aspen Institute campus among numerous other events.


June 6, 2019: The Bauhaus Ball - A free community celebration at the Wheeler Opera House with a Bauhaus-inspired costume contest, Bauhaus films and more

June 24 - 28, 2019: Anderson Ranch: Fourth of July Parade Float Workshop - (for children only) Art workshop with participation in the Fourth of July parade

July 2019: The Bauhaus movement will turn its eyes to Aspen as Heike Hanada, architect of the new Bauhaus museum in Dessau, will be in Aspen giving a series of lectures at the Aspen Art Museum in July

Aug. 4 - 7, 2019: Aspen Institute Bauhaus Program Seminar— A deep dive into Bauhaus with lectures as well as Society of Fellows: Bauhaus Program

Ongoing events

Regularly scheduled tours of the Aspen Institute campus which was conceived and designed

by Herbert Bayer with Bayer architecture, sculpture, earthworks, ceramics, paintings, photography, tapestries, and more.

The Aspen Historical Society - Herbert Bayer exhibition and Bauhaus-focused city tours


Read the whole winter issue of West of 105 for FREE here


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