Christian Dell - Design / Design Art New York Thursday, December 14, 2006 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Christian Dell; Lot 454, Christie's, Amsterdam, October 26, 1989

  • Literature

    Grassi Museum, Europäisches Kunstgewerbe 1927, exh. cat., Leipzig, 1928, ill. 44; 50 years Bauhaus, exh. cat., Württembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart, 1969, p. 106, cat. no. 222; Bauhaus-Archiv, Sammlungs-Katalog, 1981, p. 105 for an example in silver-plated metal; Galerie Torsten Bröhan, Das Bauhaus im Design des 20. Jahrhunderts, exh. cat., Düsseldorf, 1987, p. 37 for another silver-plated example once owned by Christian Dell's nephew; Experiment Bauhaus, Berlin, 1988, p. 134 for the Bauhaus-Archive example; Barry Friedman Ltd., The Bauhaus Masters and Students, exh. cat., New York, 1988, p. 103 for an exmaple in silver-plated metal; Klaus Weber, Die Metallwerkstatt am Bauhaus, exh. cat., Bauhaus-Archiv Museum für Gestaltung, Berlin, 1992, illustrated pp. 59 and 193-194 for all three exmaples; Torsten Bröhan and Thomas Berg, Avantgarde Design 1880-1930, Cologne, 1994, front cover and p. 96 for the example once owned by Christian Dell's nephew

  • Catalogue Essay

    The metal workshop at the Bauhaus opened in 1920, focusing on everyday objects of minimalist form and shape based on the circle and square, as well as the laws of the Golden Section. The present lot was crafted in 1922, while Christian Dell was acting as Master of Craft at the metal workshop. This Weinkanne (decanter) epitomizes Dell’s metalwork for the Bauhaus, as well as the work of the first two years of the workshop, in that it is exquisitely hand-made, simple in form and true to traditional metalworking techniques and materials. The Weinkannes hand-beaten surface speaks of the craftsmanship and manual workmanship process that was favored in the metal workshop in the years 1920-1922, under Master of Form, Johannes Itten. In 1923, László Moholy-Nagy took over the metal workshop and shifted the emphasis from uniting art with craft to uniting art with industry. This Weinkanne is perhaps the crowning achievement of the Bauhaus’ metal workshop under Itten’s tutelage.

    There are three known examples of this piece in different executions. The present lot is the only example executed in solid silver and was used by Dell during his life. A silver-plated example is in the Bauhaus Archive Collection and an additional silver-plated example is in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago.


Fine and important Weinkanne

Hand-wrought and hand-hammered silver, ebony.
8 7/8 in. (22.4 cm) high
Produced at the Bauhaus Metallwerkstatt, Weimar, Germany. Stamped with the designer’s monogram ”CD” and the silver mark “900.”

$180,000 - 220,000 

Design / Design Art

14 Dec 2006, 2pm
New York