This workshop explores the artistic movement of Bauhaus through drawing, design and theatre. It allows for a tactile investigation of the subject where the focus is on mediating Bauhaus through more visual means than simply talking and reading.
Quick facts about the experiment:
Children 12-16 years old
Teacher / special education teacher
120 – 150 minutes
Training design/crafting skills and abillity to transform thoughts about what Bauhaus is into a creative output
Paper for drawing, pencils, colour pencils, a big roll of white or light brown/grey carton – depends on what you have access to (preferably at least 1,5 meters in width and at least 10 meters in length), PowerPoint slide with pictures of Bauhaus costumes.
Prior to workshop:
This workshop works best if you have previously shortly introduced Bauhaus to the class. Talk about:
What was the Bauhaus movement?
What did it do/ How did it work?
Who were the people behind it?
Try to use as many visual tools as possible. Show pictures and drawings instead of only talking about it.
Part 1 – What do you remember?:
Ask the students what they remember about what they have learned about Bauhaus. They can only say words – e.g.: “Design”, “triangle”, “simple” or whatever comes to mind for them. While they talk write down all the words that come to mind on a whiteboard/ chalk board for all to see.
Part 2 – Bauhaus Croquis:
All students get a white piece of paper and a pencil to draw with
The facilitator (artist/teacher/other) stands in the middle and is the “croquis model”
The facilitator strikes a pose and now the students have 30 seconds to draw this position only using geometric shapes (triangles, squares, circles etc.)
After 30 seconds the facilitator shifts to the next pose. After 30 seconds the facilitator shifts again. Repeat the exercise 7 – 10 times
Talk about what you see. Who are the characters and how do you recognize their function and roles? In Bauhaus theatre the story is told both through the movement but also very much through the costumes.
Put up a slide show with 10 pictures featuring Bauhaus costumes. 1 costume example per slide show page.
Ask the students to draw or write anything that comes to mind when seeing the picture.
Put up 1 picture and give the students 30 seconds to write/draw. After 30 seconds you shift to the next picture.
Go through all of the pictures using the same method.
Part 4 – Create the superhero character
Now it’s time for the students to create their very own Bauhaus superhero!
Divide them into groups of 2-3 people and give them some questions like the ones above so they can start creating their character.
Allocate 20 min for them to work on the sketch for their character. They can draw or write it. However they wish.
Part 4 – Create your superhero’s costume
Your hero (or villain) needs a proper costume!
Give the students time to make their own super hero costume that fits the character using only carton and tape.
Allocate at least 30 min for them to work on their costume. They need time to prototype and try out different methods
Encourage the children to think about the principles of Bauhaus in constructing their costumes. What is the personality of the superhero and how does the costume reflect that?
If you want to expand on the exercise then ask the students to colour the costume as well. Then they will need additional time as this is time-consuming.
Part 5 – Present your Bauhaus superhero
Now it’s time to present your Bauhaus superhero
The students present their superhero in groups – including costume, catchfrase and signature move.
Remember to document the amazing costumes. We made a boomerang of the costumes as well as presenting so you could get a living picture with the signature move.