Since the 1990s, the Bauhaus Dessau Foundation has maintained an internationally unique Building Research Archive. With its wide variety of materials, it serves as a basis for research on construction measures, scientific questions, and the maintenance of buildings.
In the Building Research Archive, objects, documents, and findings from building research and the renovation of the Bauhaus and other modernist buildings are collected and made accessible for research purposes. The archive’s main focus is on building components such as windows, doors, and electrical switches, but its holdings also include samples of building materials and building products such as concrete blocks, bricks, plaster fragments, paint samples, samples of screeds and floor coverings, fragments of technical installations, and so on. Historical and present-day photographs and plans, eye witness reports, and literature on historic building constructions, techniques, and materials round off the archive’s collection.
- Conservation management plans: detailed research on the maintenance and care of selected surfaces, building components, and furnishing elements (e.g., the development of repair mortar for stonewood screed, analysis and research on the fabric covering the auditorium chairs, maintenance of the steel windows, etc.)
- Supporting planned construction measures (Bauhaus buildings, Masters’ Houses, Dessau-Törten Housing Estate): targeted research on the condition of the buildings during their construction and subsequent changes made to the buildings
- Securing and recording material samples and components that are exposed or removed during construction measures, including additional research to evaluate them
- Securing and recording historical material on the Bauhaus buildings such as photographs, drawings, and other documents
- Interviews with former or current residents of the Bauhaus buildings and other contemporary witnesses
Since 2019, the work of the Building Research Archive has been accessible to the public via the permanent exhibition Archaeology of Modernism, which is on show in the Bauhaus Building.