Artistic Culture: Art and Architecture (Kunst und Architektur)

Artistic Culture: Art and Architecture (Kunst und Architektur)

Exploring the Concept of ‘Kunst und Architektur’

  • ‘Kunst und Architektur’ translates to Art and Architecture and presents a significant facet of Germany’s cultural heritage.
  • The art and architecture in Germany reflects its rich history, often marked by periods of great change, and is indicative of its evolving sociopolitical climate and cultural innovation.
  • Studying ‘Kunst und Architektur’ provides a deeper appreciation of the German aesthetic sense, creative spirit, and social commentary through artistic expression.

Samples of ‘Kunst und Architektur’

Bauhaus School

  • The Bauhaus School, founded in 1919 by architect Walter Gropius, ushered in a new era of design with a focus on the future and on simplicity.
  • Bauhaus style is notable for its absence of ornamentation, and the idea that form should follow function. It aimed to bring art back into contact with everyday life, and thus make it more accessible to the people.
  • The legacy of the Bauhaus school is evident in many modern architectural designs and everyday objects around the world.


  • German Expressionism, flourishing in the early 20th century, was a reaction to industrialisation and urbanisation coupled with the traumas of war.
  • It sought to express the anguish of human existence through distorted and exaggerated artworks, leaning towards the abstract over realism.
  • Famous expressionists include Emil Nolde, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and Wassily Kandinsky.

Gothic Architecture

  • Gothic architecture flourished in Germany during the High and Late middle ages, characterised by features such as pointed arches, ribbed vaults and flying buttresses.
  • Significant structures include the Cologne Cathedral and Ulm Minster. The latter is known for possessing the tallest church tower in the world.

The Significance of ‘Kunst und Architektur’

  • Artistic styles and architectural designs serve as a reflection of the German sociopolitical context at different points in history.
  • Art and Architecture often became tools of social commentary, highlighting societal changes or problems.
  • Studying these forms deepens understanding of the aesthetic and inventive abilities of the Germans, and offers insights into the nation’s historical evolution and cultural context.
  • ‘Kunst und Architektur’, while focusing on the past, also serve as a critical source of inspiration for contemporary and future German creative endeavours.