Konrad Lohöfener

What did the visions of BAUHAUS and BURG look like 100 Years ago?
Where do we stand – sit – today? and which ideas do we have for the future?

Erich Dieckmann was part of the Bauhaus and one of the preeminent furniture designers of his time. From 1931 to 1933 he taught at the Burg Giebichenstein. That is why the BURG chose to study him as a designer and display his works in a large retrospective. The design and works of Erich Dieckmann were the starting point for a semester project in the field of furniture design. For various reasons, Erich Dieckmann's work seems to have been almost forgotten today and has only been examined in fragments in art historical discourse. Yet his strictly geometric chair designs and type Furniture programs were groundbreaking and are fascinating even today as a materialized vision in the symbiosis of art, craftsmanship, and industrial production. As interesting as his extensive oeuvre is on the one hand, his biography on the other hand is contradictory and must be assessed with the necessary distance. Dieckmann's closeness to and involvement in the Nazi regime from 1933 onwards must be viewed extremely critically and requires a precise historical reappraisal.

The semester project is understood from this perspective.In the context of furniture design, the semester project takes a contemporary perspective and dares to look into the future. The student's works deal with a whole range of issues and questions. How can we use materials in an ecological way? Can we invent sustainable composite materials? In what way can the ideas of circular economy be integrated into the manufacturing of products? Can we integrate traditional craft techniques and rituals into contemporary designs? How do we design seating for public spaces? And how do we respond to the close relationship between working and living during the pandemic? In the process, existing and new materials, technologies, and joining methods were examined. Conceptual approaches were explored through study models, prototypes, and installations. The concept for exhibiting these designs was developed and implemented by BURG students as part of an independent project.

16 students were part of the project “Zwischen den Stühlen” (“between the chairs”) in the summer semester 2021. In the following semester, 6 students participated in a project to develop an exhibition showing the results. Both semester projects, which are part of the exhibition “Stühle! Dieckmann! Der vergessene Bauhäusler Erich Dieckmann”, were developed in the Industrial Design/System Design department, directed by guest professor Konrad Lohöfener. It was a joint project of the Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin, the Saxony-Anhalt Arts Foundation, and the Burg Giebichenstein. The exhibition was shown to the public in Halle (Burg Galerie Volkspark) and Berlin (Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin) in 2022.

On the projectwebsite and in a publication you can find further details about the semester project and illustrations of the student's works.


2021 – 2022


Zwischen den Stühlen, guest professor at Burg Giebichenstein, University of Art and Design Halle, Department of Industrial design/ System design

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