Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
Court House, ca. 1931-1938

The Court Houses are a series of dwelling designs from the 1930s that have not yet been connected to a known location or commission. Mies served as the director of the Bauhaus in Dessau, Germany, from 1931 until its closing in 1933. The Court House concept seems to have originated during this time and was probably first conceived within the framework of the Bauhaus curriculum as an assignment for his advanced architecture students.

In this sketch of a Court House interior, Mies envisions the view from the main living area of the house through a glass wall to an exterior courtyard. The image, which reveals a solitary column, conveys the flowing nature of the space. In one sense, the Court Houses could be said to represent Mies’s way of accommodating built space to the limitations of city lots, as opposed to the freedom of country houses.

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Court House
Artist name
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
Date created
ca. 1931-1938
architectural drawing
graphite on paper
8 1/2 in. × 11 3/4 in. (21.59 cm × 29.85 cm)
Date acquired
Collection SFMOMA
Accessions Committee Fund purchase
© Estate of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Permanent URL
Artwork status
Not on view at this time.

Other Works by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

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