Handling the heritage of Bauhaus and Ulm

Speech given on the occasion of the International Design Conference Aspen, IDCA, “Visions of German Design”, Aspen Colorado, June 1996.
Printed in catalogue “Visions of German Design”, Verlag form 1996

Ladies and gentlemen,

This afternoon of the IDCA is devoted to the Bauhaus, to its impact, importance and influence on international design. It is a subject which could be regarded as historical in nature.

The American flyer for the IDCA incorrectly refers to the subject of my paper as “On current approaches to Bauhaus teaching“. However, the subject proposed to me by the German organisers is “Handling the heritage of Bauhaus and Ulm“, which is something quite different.

As the correct title implies, the aim of my paper is to discuss the meaning and relevance of the Bauhaus today and the meaning of the Hochschule für Gestaltung Ulm (which translates as the Ulm College of Design), a German institution which needs to be seen in the context of the Bauhaus and which itself had major impact on design internationally after the Second World War. And that is the subject which I will talk about because I believe that history is only truly meaningful when it is viewed in the light of contemporary problems.

You may ask yourselves to what degree, as a practising designer, teacher and design promoter, I can legitimately claim to be qualified to contribute to a discussion of the Bauhaus.

Let me provide you with some background information on personal and institutional links:

Until 1918, Adolf Hölzel was a teacher at the institution where I now myself teach, the State Academy of Visual Arts in Stuttgart. He taught Itten, Schlemmer and Baumeister, in other words the people who, together with Moholy Nagy, developed his ideas further and incorporated them into the Bauhaus foundation course.

My own teacher, Hans Warnecke, was closely associated with the Bauhaus and was a close friend of Oskar Schlemmer and Willi Baumeister. As a student in post-war Germany I was privileged to view the Bauhaus through his eyes.

As a student, I also had a wide variety of contacts with teachers and students attending the HfG Ulm. I am also a member of the Executive Council of the IFG, the International Forum for Design, which is a follow-up institution to the HfG Ulm.

Moreover, I have often had to deal professionally with the question of the lasting effects of these two institutions and what they mean to us today, “The heritage of Bauhaus and Ulm“.

As a designer and teacher I have always been called upon to evaluate and critically assess my own approach to design.

The HfG Ulm was founded while I was myself a student. It was originally conceived as a successor to the Bauhaus, but it quickly developed a number of characteristics in key areas which were quite distinct from the Bauhaus approach and which were closely observed by students such as myself who were attending institutions elsewhere.

When I went to England and spent seven years working there, my dogmatic attitudes, largely shaped by post-war Bauhaus-trained teachers, came up against English pragmatism. I learned a great deal through this experience.

Upon my return to Germany, I was confronted with a generation of young people whose political mindset was utterly different from my own, and for which I was totally unprepared. I had to decide how much of the new I wished to take on board and how much to reject. I also had to decide how much of the old I wished to jettison and how much I wanted to defend.

There then followed a generation which was very hedonistic in thoughts and actions and which totally ignored the social and political commitment of the late sixties’ generation. This generation was frequently accused of enjoying the fruits of their predecessors’ battles without appreciating their achievements and without contributing anything themselves. This generation also glimpsed and grasped the opportunity to escape the chains of classic design teachings. It believed in emotions, personal expression and sensuality. Here as well, I had to ask myself what this generation stood to lose, what it stood to gain and what my position was.

With regard to the current generation, I sense that hedonism has largely been abandoned, even if it is still to be found in isolated areas. The current generation is attempting to marry environmental aims with those of creative expression and emotionality. Today’s generation is attempting to accommodate new technologies, to analyse their social consequences and to develop appropriate paradigms of behaviour.

To a certain extent, I am myself, as a designer and teacher, a part of this European and German history of ideas, something which is very evident in my own personal life history and career.

My paper lays no claim to academic or scientific authority. I am no historian. However, I have in the course of my own life personally experienced the changes in ideas, at times playing a part in those changes myself. It is my aim today to employ my own personal experience as a designer, teacher and promoter to portray German patterns of thought and to juxtapose them with the ideals of the Bauhaus and Ulm, the two German institutions which exerted a decisive influence on international product culture.

I would like to suggest a number of tentative theories and ask a number of questions:

1. That the Bauhaus was not as isolated as is often portrayed in history of design

2. What exactly the contribution of the Bauhaus to the history of design was in terms of ideas and concepts.

3. That we have pushed the history of design during the Third Reich out of our minds and have not truly come to terms with it.

4. What teachers in post-war Germany, who were representatives of the unblemished 1920s, have achieved.

5. What the goals were that lay behind the foundation of the HfG Ulm.

6. The attempts to escape classical Modernism and the convulsions of Post-Modernism.

7. What the current generation thinks of these matters, how it handles its past and what visions it pursues.

8. Outlook

I will have to be brief on sections 1 to 6 in order to deal with current trends in more detail. I will conclude with a number of general remarks and observations.

(1) The Bauhaus was not a unique phenomenon, as it has often been suggested, it had its forerunners.

The Bauhaus and Ulm have gained international status in design education and design practice. The Bauhaus foundation course has had a huge impact world-wide and Ulm has contributed much to what can be regarded as the International Style of Classic Design. However, neither the Bauhaus nor Ulm are as isolated as they may seem; history has presented the German contribution to design and design theory in an oversimplified manner.

I would like to describe three personalities from my own personal experience:

Adolf Hölzel, who, between 1905 and 1919, taught at the academy where I myself studied and whose theory of “Bildnerische Mittel”, of visual principles or visual literacy, displaced the highly academic form of training inherited from the 19th Century. He introduced new parameters which later gave rise to significant developments.

Adolf Hölzel’s students included many famous names, such as Johannes Itten and Oscar Schlemmer. Together with Moholy Nagy, they were the source of ideas which fired the Bauhaus and which later evolved into the foundation course, the form of training which was to have global ramifications.

Another student was Bernhard Pankok, a painter and architect. The process of creating designs on paper, divorced from materials and from manufacturing processes, was for him not a suitable method of training designers who were expected to “meet the challenge of industrialisation”. His response was to create workshops staffed by master craftsmen, thus combining artistic education with training in practical skills. This, as you know, became a principle of the Bauhaus approach to education.

Willi Baumeister, too, one of the most important of the post-war German painters, was a student of Adolf Hölzel. His contributions to typography in the 1920s opened up radical new possibilities. He taught at the Städelschule in Frankfurt and was dismissed in 1933 and thereafter not permitted to work as an artist. After the war, he was a highly-regarded teacher and his views were as sought-after amongst students of the gradually emerging applied arts courses as they were amongst artists and sculptors. After the war, there was no longer the sharp dividing line between the fine arts and the applied arts.

I should of course also mention Peter Behrens, the Deutscher Werkbund, the fierce debate surrounding art and industry, the achievements of other colleges and universities, such as Burg Giebichenstein in Halle, the many artists’ associations, the influence of Dutch De Stil and Russian Constructivism, in order to demonstrate that the Bauhaus was embedded within a context of revolutionary movements and was nourished by many different sources.

(2) What was the Bauhaus?

Under Gropius, the Bauhaus brought together all these many aspects under a single umbrella to create a homogenous “Lehrgebäude”, a homogenous school of thought with a common ideology and a new approach to teaching. It was very much the inspired manifestation of its time, underlined by the emergence of new social values, such as the affordability of products for all. It was aligned with German Romanticism, its morals and ethics; it took up the challenge of new technology, and was very much in favour of industrialisation.

From the highly stylistic art nouveau it adopted the idea of a Gesamtkunstwerk and applied it to the field of architecture. It wished to be timeless, to transcend styles and to reduce objects to their functions. It was also convinced that it had found the right form for it.Its moralistic and highly distinct iconography was a source of great power and gave it international impact. The justification for this could not be expressed better than by the following statement by Sottsass junior:

“Even today, I live on the memories I have of the moral dignity of those designers, of the risk they took, of the human and poetic force they evinced, of the project, based on a unique, almost cosmic responsibility, to which they drew attention.”

I would like to add that, in my personal opinion, the dogmatism of the Bauhaus would have led to its demise even without the intervention of Hitler. The ideological, almost religious fervour of the avant-garde of yester-year has, in my view, given way to an integrational approach, one based on flexibility; today, “the ability to adapt” has become a highly important strategy for survival.

(3) The ignominious chapter in the political and cultural history of design in Germany

There is no doubt that that the Third Reich was able to seize upon the ideas of the Deutscher Werkbund and the Bauhaus and to use them for its own purposes. Concepts
such as “good form” and “timelessness” were as central to Nazi aesthetics as were ideas such as cheap, affordable for all, socially useful, economy and standardisation.

I also have to admit that many designers saw in National Socialism the opportunity to put the ideas of the Deutsche Werkbund and the Bauhaus into practice.

And, following the famous Weissenhof Housing Project in 1927 in Stuttgart, which is today a protected architectural monument, there were proposals for a follow-up project which would have been based on local construction methods and materials. We must also remember that the arguments between the international style of architecture and the much more regional approach long preceded the Third Reich (Posener).

However, the conflict between international and “vernacular” architecture took a very different turn, as we know, as a result of the “Blood and Soil Ideology” of National Socialism.

In the Third Reich, internationalism became a taboo subject. Emphasis was placed on cultivating German traditions and customs, in fostering local methods of construction and on decrying anything which did not serve the propaganda aims of the Nazis. The most important artists of the time were not permitted to go about their work. One must also remember that under this fascist regime, which was set on brutal expansion and ethnic cleansing, an “Office for the Beauty of Work” was founded with the aim of harnessing aesthetics for political aims.

Following the war, Germany was fully occupied with the task of reconstruction, what others have coined the German Economic Miracle. Germany’s political past, and with it its cultural past, were deliberately pushed into the background during this period. As a result, the post-war generation harked back to the politically unstained ideologies of the 1920s.

One of my critical students of the 1960s, Chup Friemert, decided to study the History of Design in the Third Reich. For me, it was a completely new subject and I was completely unprepared for it. Moreover, the book “Design in Germany 1933-45 and the role of the Deutscher Werkbund”, an important contribution written by Sabine Weissler, did not appear until 1990, a remarkably late date.

And I myself was a product of that post-war generation, which, in response to the rubble left behind by our parents, turned our backs on politics. Then, when I moved to London, I was suddenly confronted with Germany’s past and was forced to think about the historical context.

As a teacher myself, I wanted to introduce my students to the history of design ideas. Then I discovered that subjects such as the History of Art or the History of Design were not taught at the Bauhaus or in Ulm.

Both institutions were uninterested in history because they regarded themselves as the end of history and regarded the past as a burden to be discarded. They could not imagine that they would only represent a single episode in the history of culture. In fact, their attitude was tantamount to ideological arrogance.

(4) The pioneers after 1945

In the immediate post-war period, design was largely influenced by the pioneers of the 1920s who had trained at the Bauhaus, who were associated with it or were advocates of its approach to design. They gradually grew into their roles as teachers and fought for professional recognition.

It was a period when a commission to design an egg cup was of great significance. Glass, china and lamps dominated magazines and books. These were objects of every-day life which could be manufactured and sold without needing great investment and which were among the key tasks entrusted to designers. Today we call these products Geschmacksgüter, products which are fashion-led and whose success is highly dependent upon subjective tastes. It was in this area that designers, or Formgestalter as they called themselves at that time, primarily worked.

Looking back at his work at the Bauhaus, Wilhelm Wagenfeld, a leading pioneer of the immediate post-war period wrote in 1938: “My final task at the metal workshop of the Bauhaus was to create a tea service based on cylindrical forms, with handles which looked like the grips on tram doors. In accordance with theoretical principles, the handles were off-set and the spouts very rigid in shape.
Once the service was finished, I knew that it represented, at best, the embodiment of theoretical aims. I think that all of us in Weimar came up against the same thing, we were all too serious and too wrapped up in our work”. (Katalog „Schöne Form – Gute Ware“, Wilhelm Wagenfeld zum 80. Geburtstag, Württembergisches Landesmuseum, Stuttgart 1980)

It is worth quoting a remark made by Bruno Maderna in 1996, a contemporary composer, on Arnold Schönberg’s 12 Tone Music of the 1920s: “The older I get the more I hate dogmatism, the strict adherence to theories, to rules and regulations”.

Following the Second World War, many former students of the Bauhaus became teachers or industrial designers. It was these people who carried over the theories and teachings of the Deutscher Werkbund and the Bauhaus, together with its humanitarian aspirations, into the post-war period. In doing so, they displayed a remarkable ability to adapt: In effect, they liberated products from the dogma of the 1920s and made them acceptable for a large number of people.

(5) Ulm did not set out to be a new Bauhaus

For many, the foundation of the HfG Ulm represented the birth of a new and democratic institution in the years of the Economic Miracle, at a time when everyone suppressed political memories and concentrated on the reconstruction of the German economy in order to forget and to put the past behind them.

Originally, it was the intention to name the institution after Hans and Sophie Scholl, in memory of two students who, together with their professor Huber, were executed in 1943 for anti-fascist activities. The intention was to give political impetus.

The founders rejected a suggestion made by Walter Gropius to call the institution the “Ulm Bauhaus”. They had returned from the war and wished to devote themselves to “design of day-to-day life and of the human environment”.(Otl Aicher, Bauhaus und Ulm, in “Ulm, die Moral der Gegenstände”, Ernst und Sohn, Berlin 1987).

They did not want design to return to “the path of applied art and to seek its solutions in the field of art”, nor did they want design to worship an “uncritical Platonism of pure forms” (Aicher). For the institution’s founders, the aim was not “to extend art into everyday life”, but instead to establish an anti-art, a “culture of civilisation” (Otl Aicher) which builds a bridge between “science and technology” (Herbert Lindinger). Maldonado only wished to adopt the “anti-conventional attitude” of the Bauhaus, namely to “contribute to society within the context of its own particular historical situation”.

Ulm witnessed the same battles over direction and orientation as the Bauhaus. In the final analysis, Ulm had attempted to send its artists packing, to liberate art from its taboos, to introduce scientific principles and to reinterpret social positions.

I am describing here the history of ideas in Ulm. However, if I ask myself how the institution influenced me, the impression is a different one.
Those of us who studied at other institutions and admired Ulm from afar did not really notice the ideological burden it was carrying. It was not until later that I took note of the complex pattern of ideas and their history. It is only natural that in one’s early years one tends to concentrate on practice rather than on theory, on being useful and on getting on in industry.

Ulm provides an example of this. It was Gugelot and then Dieter Rams who, through their work for Braun, proved that design can contribute to commercial success. Even if Braun only captured a very small market share, the company’s products were highly influential. These people, teachers in Ulm, threw down a challenge to German industry and gave heart and hope to other designers. They played an important role in what is now known as the German contribution to classic international product culture.

(6) High tech and stag’s antlers

Against the background of this tradition, German post-modern design had a difficult time. It lacked the lightheartedness of the Italians; it lacked the courage to abandon ideologies. Nevertheless, Post-Modernism does exist in Germany as it does throughout the world.

The experimental avant-garde receives the lion’s share of media publicity because it is new, spectacular and the carrier of easy-to-understand ideologies. This is a reversal of Sullivan’s principle that form follows function, the backbone of the classical approach to design. At the same time, it is an international phenomenon.

New German Design has produced its own unique German approach which has taken up vernacular metaphors. By manufacturing furniture and lamps themselves, representatives of New German Design have turned their backs on industry and caused much consternation. But that is precisely what they wanted to achieve, they wanted to be provocative.
But they also wanted to liberate themselves from their Protestant history, from role models such as the Shakers, from the simple, the useful, from the grey design of the post-Ulm age, they wanted to be Catholic, opulent, and always had their eyes firmly focused on Italy. They were striking a blow for freedom; it was an act of liberation, perhaps a useful one, but one which flew in the face of our spiritual and cultural tradition. And it was not always successful.

The fact that Sullivan’s theory is no longer applicable to new microelectronic technologies is well known. The innards of a computer do not naturally suggest a particular form. In fact, they can be wrapped up in just about any form imaginable. Microelectronics represents a challenge to designers: designers are called upon to find new product design vocabularies and to ensure that form regains significance. As usual, the response to this challenge was to delve into the treasure chest of history, to borrow the forms of expressionism, of constructivism and of the Bauhaus. However, they have not borrowed the forms of vernacular design, because they are not suitable for an international design canon.

(7) New approaches, new trends

It is difficult to say with any certainty what today’s generation thinks and which particular cultural and spiritual roots it identifies with. What is going on now is still too close, too new to be judged historically. And I would never dare to speak of a homogenous design culture. Nevertheless, I feel there are four trends worthy of note:

(7.1) “New Simplicity”, a term which has already become a very hackneyed theme of theoretical debate in Germany. What does it mean, what are its objectives and how does it express itself?

– Is it a “product of the recession” as Winfried Scheuer has said or is it, as he has also claimed

– A “by-product of limited-edition designer goods”, because products, usually furniture, can be manufactured in small volume without risking too much capital (Scheuer, 1994, a conference paper)

– Is it a recurring theme, a “pattern of human and mental behaviour approach which is of eternal desirability”, (Eugen Gomringer, Vorwort zu “Das Einfache” , Internationales Forum für Gestaltung, Ulm 1994)

– Or is Western man searching for rituals and spiritual forms, as Alessandro Mendini has suggested (Form 153, 1996). He claims that we are simply yearning for meditation. “We honour simplicity and yearn for an introverted world” – in other words simplicity as a form of retreat into the spiritual.

– Does simplicity represent the return to ever-recurring models of reform, to “less is more”, a thought expressed by Mies van der Rohe and by Ot Hoffmann as the “age-old yearning for the quality of the simple”. (Katalog zur Ausstellung des Deutschen Werkbundes ” Welche Dinge braucht der Mensch “, Giessen 1995)

The ever more complex world of products has provoked a counter-current, a return to the simple things in life, to the useful and to the spiritual. It is for this reason that I believe the term “simplicity” is a highly complex, multi-faceted one with many practical, useful, ethical and aesthetic components.

(7.2) The re-discovery of the mundane, of anonymous products.

This is something which clashes with the hypertrophied world of design, which revolves around the personality of the designer, that design world which catalogues and design magazines portray.

I recently visited an exhibition with the title “Low Budget – The Discrete Charm of The Ordinary”. Frankfurt/Main 1996. The title immediately recalled to mind another exhibition some twenty years previously, in 1976, entitled “Ordinary Design” and I realized that the products were in many ways very similar.

The intention of the 1976 exhibition was to be deliberately in contrast to highly aesthetical product design, something which has to be understood within the context of the time, and which saw mundane, every-day design as an area which was free from “the manipulation of people’s needs”, because every-day objects were not tools of “social identity or one-upmanship” (Friedl/Ohlhauser).

It was the time when the theory of Techno-Culture emerged, the philosophy of exploiting products from the capital goods sector which had not been subject to the influence of highly aesthetic product design and to use these elements for the consumer goods sector: Warehouse shelving, industrial lamps, etc. In the 1976 exhibition catalogue, Bazon Brock stated that it was urgently necessary to apply the skills acquired in highly advanced areas to the objects of every-day life. I believe the opposite is true, and that it would be better to judge high culture in terms of the practical and economical than to apply high culture to the every-day world.

In addition, discussion of the link between the products of high culture and the products of vernacular culture is long overdue. Such a discussion would have been beneficial to both exhibitions.

Moreover, the 1996 exhibition lists criteria for the selection of exhibits: simplicity, low cost and anonymity. The exhibition regarded itself as a counterpoint to “uncontrolled consumer thirst for objects and styles within Western society”. The exhibition talks about charm, about the “plebeian level” on which the anonymous artist becomes creative and fertile (the question is whether it is possible to talk about an “artist” at all?) and concludes that a product can only “become noble by acquiring the patina of time” (Gerrit Krol) if it is functional in character. The products exhibited do not appear to have acquired the status of brand-name articles and for this reason they are regarded as anonymous and of particular interest to the attentive observer.

In addition, the exhibition wants to send out an aesthetics-oriented message – to spotlight the unintentional charm of products which are useful but which have not been supported by the name of a famous company or of a well-known designer.

This reminds me of the thoughts expressed by my own teacher and by the Bauhaus-trained designers of the post-war period who wanted the designer to remain in the background; in other words for the designer’s work to be an anonymous service.

(7.3) In search of an alternative aesthetic.

Anyone who observed products in the late 1980s will have noticed something rather strange. In complete contrast to the products which were generated at the very height of Post-Modernism and which were becoming ever shinier, more colourful and more playful, it was possible to find products away from the mainstream which were manufactured using recycled materials.

One of the first examples was grey, unbleached paper made from recycled newspapers and which one used for making notes and rough drafts. Today, this product is a firm favourite on the shelves of shops selling paper goods and stationary. And for environmentally aware consumers, paper appears to be the most acceptable of all materials since it can be re-cycled practically ad infinitum.

People have also rediscovered the beauty of brown wrapping paper and the limitless possibilities for constructing stable forms using corrugated cardboard.
Paper mills with an eye for a business opportunity have made a virtue of a necessity and have developed attractive, speckled cardboard.

It is more difficult for companies which do not have homogenous materials to recycle. They have turned them into decorative mixed-material boards and looked around for unusual and off-beat product ideas for which they can be used. However, these boards cannot be re-moulded or re-worked, and, once they have been used, can only be thrown away.

Faced with a mixture of different types of plastic, some companies melted them all down to form a material for the manufacture of chairs and park benches. Sometimes I feel a cold shiver of horror when I envisage a future in which our parks are populated by huge numbers of these park benches; after all, there is an awful lot of plastic which can be re-used in this way.

I believe that it is a much better idea to segregate used plastics according to type, an approach which leading car manufacturers have already developed and implemented.

People have also rediscovered the charm of chipboard, something which was always regarded as second-best. Chipboard board is, of course, a re-cycled product, made of waste materials. However, we should not forget that the original intention of the inventors of these boards, made of shredded wood, was to turn wood in its natural form into a homogenous semi-finished material suitable for high-volume manufacturing processes. The use of chipboard has been greatly facilitated by the development of numerical control and laser-cutting and water-jet techniques.

It is also possible to re-cycle leather and to make a material which can be used very much in the same way as natural skins. It smells like leather and ages like leather. Moreover, to give a secondary material which has long been known to the leather goods industry a new aesthetic appeal and to make it socially acceptable is an intelligent move.

(8) Conclusion and outlook

What I have said about new simplicity, the rediscovery of the mundane and the search for an ecological aesthetic could create the impression that German design has only been concerned with Geschmacksgüter, with fashion-led products, and that it only populates economically unimportant niches. Naturally, I have to qualify that impression. 90% of German design is to be found in classic areas, as the last few examples have shown.

However, it is not the mainstream which I wanted to talk about. That will be covered by other contributions. I wanted to draw your attention to the fringe, to the things happening off the beaten track, to the people who break the rules and cross frontiers.

The history of design in the Federal Republic of Germany is anything but homogenous. I would interpret it as a sequence of phases following the Second World War during which designers have striven for professional acceptance and recognition:

– In the early days, the aim was to carve out a role, one which maintained the morals of the 1920s but which attempted to make products more humane.

– Thereafter, the aim was to be recognised as contributors to industrial progress, to acquire technological skills and to develop new approaches to design and planning.

– This was followed by a phase which could be summarised as the desire on the part of designers to be useful to the individual; it was a phase in which industrial science and studies into human factors were very much in fashion. It was also a time when the design profession was undergoing political re-orientation, a time when questions relating to society and politics were at the centre of attention.

– The last two decades have been characterised by attempts to establish design as part of cultural creativity. New expressional values have been propagated, including fun, emotions, provocation, irony and parody.

– Today it is possible to identify wide-spread interest in ecological questions and endeavours to overcome Post-Modernism, with less expressiveness and more practical benefit.

Furthermore, when I take a look around the German design landscape, I observe that design journalism in Germany is dominated by non-designers, by historians, philosophers, sociologists and linguists who have been able to take over a new field because the practitioners are themselves lost for words.

And the leading German design magazine, FORM, has only very recently and much too late, decided to go international and be published in two languages.

Naturally, there are no longer closed communities bound by a common ideology, as was the case at the Bauhaus or in Ulm. When members of the various professional associations meet, they do so to discuss questions relating to their status and career issues. Discussion of philosophical and ideological themes is left to special symposia.
At such symposia, people are critical, fundamentalist and unwilling to compromise. Moreover, everyone is surrounded by people who share these same characteristics. Morality was always our strength; the ability to take part in dialogue, to listen to others, was always our great weakness.

To my great regret, we do not have the same self-confidence as do, for instance, the Italians. The Italians are engaged in extremely lively internal debate, but always present a united front to the public and can also rely on enviable understanding amongst politicians for cultural ideas. We cannot.
We are largely unaware of our own cultural background and achievements and we really need to do a lot of homework in order to catch up on certain chapters of our own history. After all, if you do not know your past you do not really have a future.

A little bit of pragmatism would also do us good. Perhaps we shall be able to take some back home with us as a result of this dialogue with you. It would certainly be to our advantage. And I hope that this dialogue is equally interesting to you.

This event here in Aspen is the most comprehensive presentation of post-war German design there has ever been. I am very grateful to the organisers for the opportunity they have given us to present German Design to you with its virtues, its vices and its scruples.

Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you for your attention.

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