An audio walk about the Bauhaus architect and designer Franz Ehrlich and his time at the Buchenwald concentration camp
Franz Ehrlich (1907–1984) made a career for himself in the early years of the GDR. He designed the “Funkhaus Nalepastrasse” in Berlin, which, until 1990, was the headquarters of the State Broadcasting service of the GDR. His furniture series “602”, designed for Deutsche Werkstätten Hellerau, was a great success and is considered a classic of “Eastern Modernism” today. Franz Ehrlich’s career as an architect began at Bauhaus in Dessau.
However, Ehrlich is relevant not only because of the high quality of his design work, but above all because of his complex life trajectory, in which the central conflicts and catastrophes of the 20th century are symptomatically reflected. After the National Socialists came to power, he became part of the anti-fascist resistance and in 1937 was sent to Buchenwald concentration camp as a political prisoner. During his imprisonment, he designed, among other things, the well-known lettering “Jedem das Seine” (“To Each His Own”) on the gate of the camp. After his release in 1939, he worked as an architect for the major paramilitary Nazi organization SS.
The audio walk tells the story of the Bauhausler Franz Ehrlich in the Buchenwald concentration camp. It guides the visitor through the memorial site via a map that leads to seven locations which played an important role in Ehrlich’s time at the camp.
Creative Direction and Concept: Jens-Uwe Fischer
Art Direction and Development: Refrakt
Speakers: Kimberly Bradley (EN), Ralf Schlüter (DE)
Translation: Sylee Gore
Sound: Steven Hofmann
A production of the HFBK Hamburg, Design Theory, Prof. Dr. Friedrich von Borries. In cooperation with Klassik Stiftung Weimar and Stiftung Gedenkstätten Buchenwald und Mittelbau-Dora. Supported by the German Research Foundation (DFG), 281316174, and the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Thuringia.
Franz Ehrlich in Buchenwald