Foto: Claudius Lazzeroni


The Folkwang’s world of design in overview

Even before the founding of the Folkwang School in 1927, designers were there (as the School of Trades and Applied Arts). They were closely associated and worked in parallel with the other Folkwang arts from the very beginning, and also under the name “Folkwang School of Design” (Folkwangschule für Gestaltung) after 1928. From 1948 to 1972 photographers, carvers and sculptors, graphic designers, commercial artists and the like were learning and creating under the same roof as musicians, dancers and actors in the Benedictine Abbey in Werden. It was not until 2007, however, that they became an official part of the Folkwang Hochschule, along with the Photography, Communication Design and Industrial Design programs.

Since 2010, the premises of the Zollverein World Heritage Site have been a home to the Folkwang University of the Arts with its use of the architecturally outstanding SANAA Building. On the Zollverein site in view of the SANAA Building, a new building is undergoing construction to house the Design Faculty with all its study programmes. The 2017 winter semester will witness the start of teaching activities, enabling the Zollverein to become home to the entire Design Faculty of the Folkwang University of the Arts together with its workshops and all its students and staff.

No future without an origin
Folkwang is one of the oldest training locations in photography in Germany, and in the 1950s it became the epitome of photographic training under Otto Steinert. The disciplines of Communication Design and Industrial Design are also indebted to the special Folkwang tradition, represented by numerous distinguished teachers and a wide range of interdisciplinary artistic, theoretical and practical training. On this basis, the whole Folkwang Design area fosters cross-disciplinary work with international partners as well as close contact with commerce and industry, thus enabling the Folkwang idea to be carried into the future in a vibrant and reality-based way.

What is Folkwang design?

Well-trained designers make an important contribution to designing our environment by virtue of their holistic practical and critical thinking, their sensibility and capacity to think ahead, and their knowledge of culture, art, technology, ergonomics, science and the marketplace. The Folkwang’s training in Design aims to educate this kind of designer, to give them the basis for new perspectives and approaches and to encourage them in establishing their own individual attitudes and approaches to design – all within the context of a unique cross-disciplinary course structure and the fusion of theory with practice.


Quartier Nord | Zollverein Campus

Martin-Kremmer-Straße 21
45327 Essen
Tel +49 (0) 201_6505-1419
Fax +49 (0) 201_6505-1492



Directions and Maps