THE ASPEN INSTITUTE OPENS A PERMANENT MUSEUM TO HONOR A BAUHAUS MASTER.
An installation view of Herbert Bayer: An Introduction. PHOTO BY TONY PRIKYRL
The Resnick Center for Herbert Bayer Studies at the Aspen Institute. PHOTO BY BERNARD JAZZAR
LAST SUMMER, art connoisseurs had their first look at Aspen’s newest museum, the Resnick Center for Herbert Bayer Studies (thebayercenter.org), which opened during the Aspen Ideas Festival. The much-anticipated 8,000-square-foot center celebrates the legacy of the iconic Austrian artist and Bauhaus master Herbert Bayer.
The center’s inaugural exhibition, titled Herbert Bayer: An Introduction, offers a comprehensive, six-decade survey of the artist’s work. The artwork is chronologically arranged across 13 galleries and highlights over 150 rarely exhibited works. While Bayer is well known for his work in design, the exhibit focuses on his painting, watercolors and drawings.
The Bayer Center is set on the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Meadows campus, which the artist himself designed in the ’50s and ’60s. Working with Rowland + Broughton, architect Jeffrey Berkus infused the design with a Bauhaus aesthetic, from the elevator’s glass windows to the exterior’s white stucco. The thin white roof appears to hover over the top. While the building draws inspiration from the 1926 Bauhaus in Germany, its modern design supports museum-grade conditions for the display and storage of fine art.
This fall, Richard Carter, founder of the Aspen Art Museum and Bayer’s studio assistant in Aspen in the 1970s, will offer guided tours at the museum. “I’m looking forward to sharing personal stories and anecdotes that will give people an insight not only into Bayer’s work but to him as a person and artist,” Carter says.