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High-quality simplicity

Deutsche Werkstätten in China

High-quality simplicity

Deutsche Werkstätten in China

Date

2022

Team

Klara Nemeckova (DE)
Annette Hellmuth (DE)
Thomas Geisler (DE)
Gao Yuan (CN)
Wang Yang (CN)
Stefanie Thiedig (DE)
Xie Kaijin (CN)

Expertise

Decorative Art
Design Education
International Design History
Socialist Design
Collections of Teaching Materials
Social History
Economic History

Links

Project page on the Goethe-Institut China
China Design Museum 
Deutsch Werkstätten Hellerau

Partners

 

Header Image

Franz Ehrlich, models for living room cabinet 602/G, 1956, VEB Deutsche Werkstätten Hellerau © Kunstgewerbemuseum/​SKD, Photo: Gunter Binsack.

The exchange program between two research-based institutions in China and Germany together with students, experts and other stakeholder will explore the relations between China and Germany in the field of furniture and interior design in the 20th century. Networks of designers, traders, governmental and educational institutions in the post-war era are the focus of this research project. The example of the Deutsche Werkstätten Hellerau, founded in 1898 by Karl Schmidt, himself a founding member of the Deutsche Werkbund, will serve as a case study for the program. The biggest historical furniture collection of the company housed, housed at the Museum of Applied Arts (Kunstgewerbemuseum) of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, the historical archive of the company, housed in the main state archive of Dresden (Hauptstaatsarchiv Dresden) as well as other archives in Germany and China will form the basis for the research. The company’s long history in international trade of modern interiors (even before the Bauhaus) and its legacy during the GDR era up until today give insights into the long history of entanglements with Chinese creatives and companies. Professional exchange and joint archival research can contribute to the long-lasting creative relations between China and Germany. 

Franz Ehrlich, Modelle für die Anbaumöbel Typensatz 602, 1956, VEB Deutsche Werkstätten Hellerau | © Kunstgewerbemuseum / SKD, Foto: Gunter Binsack
Franz Ehrlich, Modelle für die Anbaumöbel Typensatz 602, 1956, VEB Deutsche Werkstätten Hellerau | © Kunstgewerbemuseum / SKD, Foto: Gunter Binsack