Letterform Archive expands its Online Archive with Bauhaus School publications
SAN FRANCISCO, California, February 1, 2023 — Letterform Archive announces a significant update to its Online Archive with the digitization of fourteen Bauhaus books and three years of Bauhaus magazines. The publications are now available online as free resources to anyone in the world. This is the first time these publications will be available in full, using digitization techniques that result in high-fidelity imagery and text that can be read on screen.
The book series, Bauhausbucher, was published by Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius and professor László Moholy-Nagy and served to condense and deliver Bauhaus ideas to a wide audience. Fourteen volumes were issued between 1925 and 1930, all of which are now available on the Online Archive.
Bauhaus magazine, the school’s other major publication, was printed quarterly and kept readers up to date on happenings at the school, contemporary design criticism, as well as cutting-edge industrial design products. It is known as a rich primary source for understanding the Bauhaus during its most prolific years and was in publication for four years. Eleven issues are now available on the Online Archive.
Founded in 1919 by German architect Walter Gropius, the Bauhaus school embraced the tools of mass production in the creation of radical new art. To communicate the school’s vision in print, Bauhaus graphic design had a bold utilitarian look with sans-serif typefaces, asymmetrical layouts, experimental alphabets, and photomontage. The Bauhaus’ iconic style has inspired generations of designers and the school’s lasting significant impact on modern visual culture is still obvious today.
Letterform Archive’s Online Archive first launched amidst the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 with the goal to provide radical global access to the Archive’s collection of graphic design and typography artifacts. All Online Archive images are digitized using high-fidelity photography, as well as raking light, sensitive staging, and high-resolution files to produce true-to-life imagery that captures the small details of each object. The Online Archive currently holds over 21,000 images of nearly 3,000 items.
“We’re excited to share these treasures from the Archive’s Bauhaus collection with our global community,” says Executive Director Rob Saunders. “This drop is significant because it’s the first time these publications are being made openly available in this format. Our objects are never scanned for digital preservation. The goal is to bring the Archive experience into people’s homes by using high-tech digitization processes to make our online collections’ imaging complex, three-dimensional, and as lifelike as possible. We want to really give folks a sense of what it would be like to view the objects up close, in person.”
View Bauhaus publications on Letterform Archive’s Online Archive at http://lettarc.org/bauhaus-publications/.
About Letterform Archive
Based in San Francisco, Letterform Archive is a nonprofit center for inspiration, education, and community. It preserves important artifacts in the history of letterforms and graphic design, and it strives to actively share them with the public. Since it opened to visitors in 2015, the collection has grown in size through the generosity of donors, and now includes over 100,000 items related to the letter arts. The Archive serves a global community through social media, publications, and the Online Archive, and offers a full-year postgraduate certificate program in type design as well as public workshops in calligraphy, lettering, and typography. Additionally, the Archive curates local and international exhibitions, organizes lectures, and hosts salons to showcase collections. Learn more at letterformarchive.org.