Anni Albers (1899 – 1994) German Textile Designer, artist and teacher

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Anni Albers 1926 wall hangings
Anni Albers 1926 wall hangings

Anni Albers was a German Textile Designer, artist and teacher. She was born in Berlin and was the Wife of Josef Albers.


1916-19, she studied under Martin Brandenburg in Berlin.

1919-20, Kunstgewerbeschule, Hamburg; and 1920-22, Bauhaus, Weimar and Dessau, under Georg Muche, Gunta Stรถlzl, and Paul Klee. 


Between 1922-29, she taught textile design at the Bauhaus, Weimar and Dessau.

In 1925 she married Josef Albers and was the first to experiment with weaving cellophane.

Between 1930-33, she worked independently in Dessau and Berlin.

She and her husband settled in the USA in 1933, was an assistant professor of art at Black Mountain College, North Carolina.

Anni Albers Tapestry 1948
Anni Albers Tapestry 1948

Between 1933-49 was active as a freelance textile designer.

In 1949, she moved with her husband to New Haven, Connecticut.

She was active in both handweaving and machine production, her designs sometimes reflecting the geometry of her husband’s paintings.

She designed textiles for Knoll for more than 25 years from 1959 and, from 1978, for Sunar. 

Anni Albers Notebook 1970 - 1980
Anni Albers Notebook 1970 – 1980

Anni Albers her writings

Anni Albers’ publications, particularly her bestsellers On Weaving (1965) and On Designing (1959) and her work as a designer and craftswoman, have had the most significant impact. In the postwar period, her craft weaving theories became the conceptual backbone of American fibre art philosophy. She believed that for weaving to be relevant and artistically valuable, it needed to be based on a rigorous, comprehensive design concept. She singled out the thread as the fundamental building block from which the pattern should grow into a logical and harmonious whole. She instructed weavers not to put patterns on the fabric’s surface but instead allow their designs to emerge from the weaving process itself. “It is preferable for the substance to speak for itself than for us to speak for ourselves.”


She received a 1961 gold medal for craftsmanship from the American Institute of Architects


Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The design encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.

You may also be interested in

Anni Albers: Notebook 1970-1980 – Encyclopedia of Design

By Anni Albers A superb facsimile of the only known notebook of legendary artist Anni Albers, this publication offers insight into the methodology of a modern master. Beginning in 1970, Anni Albers filled her graph-paper notebook regularly until 1980.

Albers: Interaction of Color – Encyclopedia of Design

Interaction of Color is Josef Albers masterwork and is one of the significant works on the nature and use of colour in art. It is indispensable as a guide for artists, instructors, and students.

Josef Albers (1888 – 1976) – German painter, designer, theoretician, and teacher

Josef Albers (1888 – 1976) was a German painter, designer, theoretician, and teacher. He was born in Bottrop, Westphalia. He was professionally active in Germany and the USA. He was the husband of Anni Albers. “When I paint, I try to develop visual articulation says, Josef Albers.

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