The German town of Lauendörfe is home to a peculiar world. The striking red color of the steel and glass structure emerges from the green field, reminding us of an organic connection between humans and their natural environment, and as we enter the premises, we arrive at one of the central hubs of modern furniture design.
The Tecta Kragstuhlmuseum is much more than a simple art gallery: it is a physical embodiment of the philosophy and creative vision that made the German brand one of the torchbearers of 20th century furniture design and, more importantly, the Bauhaus movement. Bauhaus had an undeniable impact on the past 100 years of design, and thanks to Tecta it continues to live on and inspire contemporary audiences. The brand, whose portfolio is available in Hungary thanks to their exclusive distributors, Decor Floor, was the subject of our latest article exploring timelessness and evolution in design.
Tecta was founded in 1956 in the small German city of Lauenförde and has become one of the central hubs of the Bauhaus movement. What makes Bauhaus so essential to the brand?
The 30 licensed Bauhaus models that we produce ourselves in Lauenförde are the basis and core of our identity. From the beginning, it has been our goal to keep these models alive and to develop them further. And this in the sense of Walter Gropius’ credo to understand and live art and technology as a new unity.
The naming of the brand was a statement in itself: what exactly does the name “Tecta” encompass?
The name Tecta connotes technology and, more generally, the Greek concept of techne:
things conceived, made possible and created by man, offering benefits both physical and spiritual.
The company produces essential modern design, but it is not just a manufacturer: it discovers, invents, explains, mediates, excites, and breathes new life into material things.
Over the years, the brand has collaborated with a number of artists and designers from the world of avantgarde, from Walter Gropius through the Smithsons and to many more, highly influential creators. What is the secret to fruitful and successful collaborations?
If you can call it a secret, it is probably in the way we work. Our furniture is created in the workshops in collaborations between craftsmen, artists and entrepreneurs. This way, all participants come as close as possible to the core of the design and production processes. We consider this essential to the development of our timeless furniture.
Why is it important for Tecta to not only conserve, but to adapt Bauhaus for a contemporary audience?
We see the Bauhaus as a school of thought and work. Everything is in motion and development. I would best describe it as an evolution.
In this respect, we do not want to remain stuck in the past, but rather to courageously develop further.
How well does the brand’s mission translate to our everyday lives? Where do you see the middle ground between Tecta’s deep understanding and passion for design and art history, and the everyday needs of modern clients?
The furniture we produce is timeless, that is our claim. And this applies to the 100 year old Bauhaus designs as well as to contemporary designs. In addition, as a small manufacturing company, we are able to respond to many individual customer requests and implement them. In contrast to mass production, our furniture can be virtually tailor-made.
Do Tecta products yearn for a well-designed, specific interior where they can fit into, or are these products more flexible in that sense, and suitable for a wide range of environments?
Clearly, our models fit into many types of environments. Often, it is precisely the contrast that acts as an aesthetic enhancement. Such a piece of furniture radiates something that goes beyond the pure function - regardless of the setting.
Continuous development and brand evolution are the basic tenets of Tecta. What are some of the more observable trends of the early 2020s, and what’s there for interior and furniture design in the near future?
I don’t like to make predictions.
As a company, we simply continue to work in our own ways on the evolution of our furniture.
If you had to explain Tecta for someone who has never heard of the brand before, what specific products would you choose to represent the brand and its philosophy?
The beginning of the Bauhaus is represented by the director’s chair F51 by Walter Gropius, which already carries the cantilever principle. The next generation is the foldable tubular steel chair D4 by Marcel Breuer, a revolution almost 100 years ago! In the 1980s, the three-legged chair B1 by Stefan Wewerka stands as an icon for the further development of modernity, a new way of thinking. Today, for me, the D9 cantilever chair by Wolfgang Hartauer is the contemporary interpretation of Marcel Breuer’s vision: "In the end, you sit on an elastic column of air".
At S/ALON BUDAPEST, visitors get a chance each year to take a peek into the turbulent and colorful reality of premium Hungarian and international design in the form of extraordinary interior concepts and the latest product releases. Be sure to join us at the Budapest Arena next year, when we’re returning with S/ALON BUDAPEST 2022!