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History

«The Ulm Model»

(Otl Aicher, «archithese» 15, 1975)

The years from 1953 through 1956 were heavily influenced by Max Bill, the first rector. He saw the HfG as a continuation of the Bauhaus, as was officially declared in a prospectus in 1952. However, only a few years later, in 1956, the school saw its first controversial debates over teaching methods and the curriculum. The younger lecturers demanded an independent teaching model rooted in science and theory, which would conflict with the concept propagated by the «followers of Bauhaus.» The designer should be an equal partner in the decision-making process of industrial design rather than a superior artist. Tomás Maldonado emphasized this point during his programmatic speech at Expo 58 in Brussels. Unhappy with the Ulm Model and the Board of Governors, a form of collective leadership, Max Bill first resigned as rector and finally left the HfG altogether in 1957.