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Institute of Design


The IIT Institute of Design is a school of design founded in 1937 in Chicago by László Moholy-Nagy, a Bauhaus teacher (1923–1928).

After a spell in London, Bauhaus master Moholy-Nagy, at the invitation of Chicago’s Association of Art and Industry, moved to Chicago in 1937 to start a new design school, which he named the New Bauhaus. The philosophy of the school was basically unchanged from that of the original, and its first headquarters was the Prairie Avenue mansion that architect Richard Morris Hunt, designed for department store magnate Marshall Field.

Due to financial problems the school briefly closed in 1938. However, Walter Paepcke, Chairman of the Container Corporation of America and an early champion of industrial design in America, soon offered his personal support, and in 1939, Moholy-Nagy re-opened the school as the Chicago School of Design. In 1944, this became the Institute of Design, and in 1949 it became part of the new Illinois Institute of Technology university system and also the first institution in the United States to offer a PhD in design.

Moholy authored an account of his efforts to develop the curriculum of the School of Design in his book Vision in Motion.

Archival materials are held by the Ryerson & Burnham Libraries at the Art Institute of Chicago. The Institute of Design Collection includes articles, letters, photographs, and other materials documenting the institute’s history and works by faculty and students. Select archival film materials are held at Chicago Film Archives, who store and provide access to a handful of Institute of Design films.

Taken from the Wikipedia page on Institute of Design