Born in Berlin , Walter Gropius was the third child of Walter Adolph Gropius and Manon Auguste Pauline Scharnweber. Gropius married Alma Mahler (1879–1964), widow of Gustav Mahler . Walter and Almas daughter, named Manon after Walters mother, was born in 1916. When Manon died of polio at age 18, composer Alban Berg wrote his Violin concerto in memory of her (it is inscribed "to the memory of an angel"). Gropius and Alma divorced in 1920. (Alma had by that time established a relationship with Franz werfel, whom she later married.) In 1923, Gropius married Ise (Ilse) Frank (d. 1983), and they remained together until his death. They adopted Beate Gropius, also known as Ati.
•Walter Gropius, like his father and his great-uncle Martin Gropiusbefore him, became an architect. Gropius could not draw, and wasdependent on collaborators and partner-interpreters throughout hiscareer.•In 1910 Gropius left the firm of Behrens and together with fellowemployee Adolf Miyer established a practice in Berlin. Together theyshare credit for one of the seminal modernist buildings created duringthis period: the Faguswerk in Alfeld an der Leine , Germany , a shoelast factory. Although Gropius and Meyer only designed the facade, theglass curtain walls of this building demonstrated both the modernistprinciple that form reflect function and Gropiuss concern withproviding healthful conditions for the working class. Other works of thisearly period include the office and factory building for the WerkburnExhibition (1914) in Cologne .
In 1919, Gropius was involved in the Glass Chain utopian expressionist correspondenceunder the pseudonym "Mass." Usually more notable for his functionalist approach, the"Monument to the March Dead," designed in 1919 and executed in 1920, indicatesthat expressionism was an influence on him at that time.In 1923, Gropius designed his famous door handles, now considered an icon of 20th-century design and often listed as one of the most influential designs to emergefrom Bauhaus. He also designed large-scale housing projects in Berlin, Karlsruheand Dessau in 1926-32 that were major contributions to the New Objectivitymovement, including a contribution to the Siemensstadt project in Berlin.
Walter Gropiuss Monument to the March Dead (1921)Bauhaus (built 1925–1926) in Dessau,Germany
The building that is commonly referred as the Fagus building is the main building.It was constructed in 1911 according to Werner’s plan but with the glass facadesdesigned by Gropius and Meyer and then expanded in 1913. The Fagus building is a40-centimeter high, dark brick base that projects from the facade by 4 centimeter.The entrance with the clock is part of the 1913 expansion. The interiors of thebuilding, which contained mainly offices, were finished in the mid 20s. The othertwo big buildings on the site are the production hall and the warehouse. Both wereconstructed in 1911 and expanded in 1913. The production hall is a one-storeybuilding. It was almost invisible from the railway (north) elevation and acquired aproper facade after the expansion. The warehouse is a four-storey building withfew openings. Its design followed closely the original plan by Werner and it is leftout from many of the photographs. Apart from them, the site contains varioussmall buildings designed by Gropius and Meyer.Gropius and Meyer were able toenforce only minor changes in the overall layout of the factory complex. Overall,Werners intended layout for the individual buildings within the complex wascarried out; greater uniformity and coherence were achieved, however, throughGropius and Meyers reductionism in form, material, and color.
The first WerkbundExhibition of 1914 was held at Rheinpark in Cologne, Germany.Bruno Tauts best-known building, the prismatic dome of the Glass Pavilion of whichonly black and white images survive today, was in reality a brightly colored landmark.Walter Gropius and Adolf Meyer designed a model factory for the exhibition. TheBelgian architect Henri Van de Velde designed a model theatre. Bruno Tauts Glass Pavilion
The Gropius House was the family residence of noted architect Walter Gropius at68 Baker Bridge Road, Lincoln, Massachusetts. It is now owned by Historic NewEngland and is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday (June 1 – October15, and weekends (October 16 – May 31). An admission fee is charged.This house was his first architectural commission in the United States. Hedesigned it in 1937, when he came to teach at Harvard Universitys GraduateSchool of Design, and it was built in 1938. He chose the area because of itsproximity to Concord Academy which his daughter, Ati, was going to attend. Itremained Gropius home from 1938 until his death in 1969. (Gropius had abenefactor. Mrs. James J. Storrow offered him the site and the capital and wasso pleased with the result that she allocated house sites to four other professorsas well, two of which Gropius helped design.
1938 Walter Gropius house, Lincoln,Massachusetts Gropius House, front view
Gropius created innovative designs that borrowed materials andmethods of construction from modern technology.This advocacy of industrialized building carried with it a belief in teamwork and an acceptance of standardization and prefabrication.Using technology as a basis, he transformed building into a science ofprecise mathematical calculations.An important theorist and teacher, Gropius introduced a screen wallsystem that utilized a structural steel frame to support the floors andwhich allowed the external glass walls to continue without interruption.