The design profession developed as a result of the Industrial Revolution when the machine replaced the craftsman and mass-produced goods replaced individually made artifacts. As the economy increased in scale, we began to abandon tailor-made products.
Within this context, the German Bauhaus was born.
The Bauhaus had a revolutionary agenda: to create an new aesthetic appropriate for a modern industrial society. The school would use technology to improve our quality of life.
“A truly legitimate continuity for the Bauhaus arose in a school of design to which László Maholy-Nagy contributed the elementary program and the artistic substance of his life work: the ”New Bauhaus.” founded in Chicago in 1937 and continuing its activities to the present day in the Institute of Design of the Illinois Institute of Technology.”
—Hans Wingler, author of The Bauhaus
Since its founding as the New Bauhaus, IIT Institute of Design has grown into the largest full-time graduate-only design program in the US. As a center of the first design methods movement in the 1960s, we developed tools for structured planning. In the early 1990s, our faculty and students helped pioneer the human-centered design that has become a standard. In the early 2000s, we helped launch the design thinking movement, linking design more closely to business innovation. We embrace the spirit of the New Bauhaus as we continue define what it means to design today.