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MHS Library | Marcel Breuer

About Marcel Breuer

Marcel Lajos Breuer, was a Hungarian-born modernist, architect and furniture designer. One of the masters of Modernism, Breuer extended the sculptural vocabulary he had developed in the carpentry shop ...Wikipedia
Born21 May 1902, Pécs, Hungary
Design: Wassily Chair

Known to his friends and associates as Lajkó (the diminutive of his middle name and pronounced Lye-ko[1]), Breuer left his hometown at the age of 18 in search of artistic training and was one of the first and youngest students at the Bauhaus – a radical arts and crafts school that Walter Gropius had founded in Weimar just after the first World War. He was recognized by Gropius as a significant talent and was quickly put at the head of the Carpentry Shop. (Gropius was to remain a lifelong mentor for a man who was 19 years his junior.)

After the school had moved from Weimar to Dessau in 1925, Breuer returned from a brief sojourn in Paris to join older faculty members such as Josef AlbersWassily Kandinsky, and Paul Klee as a Master, eventually teaching in its newly established department of architecture.

First recognized for his invention of bicycle-handlebar-inspired tubular steel furniture, Breuer lived off his design fees at a time in the late 1920s and early 1930s when the architectural commissions he was looking for were few and far-between. He was known to such giants as Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe, whose architectural vocabulary he was later to adapt as part of his own, but hardly considered an equal by them who were his senior by 15 and 16 years. Despite the widespread popular belief that one of the most famous of Breuer's tubular steel chairs, the Wassily Chair was designed for Wassily Kandinsky, it was not; Kandinsky admired Breuer's finished chair design, and only then did Breuer make an additional copy for Kandinsky's use in his home. When the chair was re-released in the 1960s, it was designated "Wassily" by its Italian manufacturer, who had learned that Kandinsky had been the recipient of one of the earliest post-prototype units. (Read more on Wikipedia) See also for chronology of his work.



The Wassily Chair (1925-6)

Isokon Long Chair (1935-6)

Video about the famous Wassily chair



Marcel Breuer - digital archive (375 projects)

Marcel Breuer - design and architecture (photos)

Interview with curator Matthias Remmele about Breuer

About Marcel Breuer on the de de ce blog

Marcel Breuer - Vitra Design Museum

A room at the Ventrice apartment, London, 1936.
© Photo Mark Oliver Dell and H. L. Wainwright / Architectural Review – Marcel. Breuer Papers, Archives of American Art, Washington, D.C.

The heavily "de Stijl" influenced Lattenstuhl by Marcel Breuer (1924). As seen at Marcel Breuer – Design and Architecture, Bauhaus Dessau

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