iBauhaus: The iPhone as the Embodiment of Bauhaus Ideals and Design, 2020

Published by Penguin Random House, New York



“Persuasive . . . charming . . . [I] was thrilled by his most audacious theories . . . I’ve looked at my iPhone countless times; having read this book, I now feel that I’ve truly seen the thing.”

—Rumaan Alam, The New Republic


A rich, wide-ranging meditation on the iPhone as direct descendant of the 1930’s Bauhaus, one of the 20th century’s most influential schools of art and design (summed up in Mies van der Rohe’s dictum, “less is more”) whose principle aim was to connect art and industry. From one of the leading authorities on the Bauhaus and modernism.

Nicholas Fox Weber, in this deft, entertaining, and clever rumination on art and technology, writes of the iPhone as the essence of the Bauhaus principles of form following function—of honesty in design and materials that reflect the true nature of objects and buildings, favoring linear and geometrical forms; adhering to line, shape and colors; synthesizing art to modern times; the fusion in design of art and technology.

Weber, an authority and celebrant of 20th-century modernism, ranging from the paintings of Balthus to the architecture of Le Corbusier, was a close associate of Anni and Josef Albers, the last living giants of the Bauhaus, and he absorbed firsthand the truest beliefs of the Bauhaus. The Alberses emphasized their passion for “good design over bad art.”

Weber writes that the Bauhaus was not a style, but an attitude: clear design and visual acuity as the embodiment of morality and honesty.