The Unfettered Gaze
The Rasch Brothers and their Influence on Modern Architecture
Taking a comprehensive view of the unconventional ideas of the architects and designers Bodo and Heinz Rasch (1902–1996 and 1903–1995), the exhibition places the work of the brothers in an illuminating relationship with recent architectural history.
In particular it was their suspended building constructions, their influence on container architecture or their visions for pneumatic building shells that pointed the way well beyond their time and their possibilities. In addition to this, however, they did a lot to publicize the ‘New Building” movement, and took a keen interest in modern graphics and typography as well as designing furniture and complete interiors. Starting with their cooperation with Mies van der Rohe in the design of a sample apartment for the Weissenhof Estate (a housing estate built for the Stuttgart Construction Expo in 1927), they were intensively involved in the extremely exciting development of the cantilever chair.
It is only in the architecture of the post-war period, however, that the possibilities of the daring visions of Heinz and Bodo Rasch are reflected in their full scope. They can be traced in the ambitious architectural projects since the 1960s up to the present: designs from the hands of acclaimed architects – from Germany, Europe, America to Japan – cast a surprisingly current light on the creative potential of these two exceptional designers.
How far this unfettering of the gaze, the overcoming of habitualized perspectives of design reaches into the present is also illustrated by selected, contemporary artists: they playfully conquer new territory with daring room designs, cloud formations and free-standing constructions. The rich legacy of the Rasch Brothers thus emerges as an open space for thought going beyond the course of history.
Heinz and Bodo Rasch, Archigram, Coop Himmelb(l)au, François Dallegret, Luc Deleu & T.O.P. office, Egon Eiermann, Norman Foster, Bertrand Goldberg, Nicholas Grimshaw, Haus-Rucker-Co, Michael Hopkins, Kengo Kuma, Kisho Kurokawa, Yukata Murata, NL Architects, Cedric Price, Richard Rogers, Antoine Stinco, Karl Schwanzer, Spillmann Echsle Architekten, Studio DDL, Studio James & Mau
Michael Beutler, Luka Fineisen, Erika Hock, Ernesto Neto, Martin Pfeifle
Many thanks to the Marta Herford Corporate Partners and Corporate Premium Partners as well as the Marta Fund for New Art for their ongoing support of our program.