Nadine Barth


With his photographs of Bauhaus inspired buildings Jean Molitor takes us on an exciting journey of discovery through countries like Lebanon, Israel, Cuba, Cambodia, Burundi, Congo, Guatemala, Uruguay and Argentina as well as Europe.
99 years ago, in 1919, the Bauhaus was founded in Weimar and in 1924 the association Der Ring. Here Bauhäusler like Walter Gropius und Ludwig Mies van der Rohe exchanged their point of views and ideas with Erich Mendelsohn, Hans Scharoun and other modern thinking architects.
After the catastrophic experiences of the First World War the progressive architects were motivated to radically rethink life, society and everyday life coming up with innovative ideas of living and design.
Despite the school closing in Dessau in 1932, and the compelling breakup of the association Der Ring in 1933 the ideas of the Neues Bauen spread throughout the world.
One of the aims of Molitor‘s photographic project is to show global connections and the worldwide exchange that took place. bau1haus is an open project. The archive is growing day by day. Often, the architects of the houses cannot be found and in many cases there’s no information on the building. It remains a suspenseful challenge for the future to find out if and how the architects met and inspired each other.
“I see my work as a race against time”, Molitor says, facing the ruin and expressing the urgency of his project. Molitor, who studied photography at the College of Graphic and Book Arts in Leipzig, documents buildings in a factual manner from a slightly elevated position. Referencing historical examples, he calls his process survey photography. The houses in the photographs seem resplendent and grand in equal measure. People rarely make an appearance; the focus is on the architecture.bau1haus aims to document the buildings of this period as they appear in everyday life, including petrol stations, boathouses, hospitals, cinemas, schools, residences and factory buildings. Molitor is always in search of the perfect image. “With bau1haus, I want to show the impact that Bauhaus and similar movements had all over the world. My goal is to build up a global photographic archive of these buildings”, the Berlin photographer and cosmopolite states. The already seemingly endless series of architectural photographs is just a fraction of this huge project, the only one of its kind and unparalleled in terms of its quality.

A publication by Hatje Cantz will accompany the exhibition.