Kurt Baer, Leistungsauszeichnung DAF

Back

Price: on request

Description

Set of two ‘DAF Leistungsabzeichen’ (awards) for the following achievements:
– ‘Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘ (‘for Outstanding Contribution to Public Health’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘ (‘for Outstanding Support of the KdF organisation’).
Designed by Professor Kurt Baer, goldsmith in Berlin.
Large iron plaques (73 x 53 cm) weighting 21 kilogram each.
Works with a historical value, and aesthetical expressive design.

Detail photos of the two plaques:

The plaques are provided on the back with two marks from foundry Preussag, the ‘Preussische Bergwerks- und Hütten AG‘, founded at October 9, 1923 in Berlin:
1. the Preussag-schield (the Prussian coat of arms from 1933 to 1935 consisting of an eagle with a swastika, sword and lightning bolts, and below a hammer and pick);
2.  the ‘Königliches Hüttenambt Gleiwitz’- stamp (crown and the letters HAG).

Left: the Preussag-schield.
Right: the ‘Königliches Hüttenambt Gleiwitz’- stamp.
  

Preussag advertising in the GDK-exhibition catalog 1941.

From Preussag to TUI…
In 1923 the Prussian state run coal mines, steel mills and salt works -not located in the Ruhr- were converted into stock corporations. Provided with a capital stock of 500.000 Goldmark ‘Preussag’ or the ‘Preussische Bergwerks- und Hütten Aktiengesellschaft’ entered into activity as a mining and steel company operating from Berlin (foundation October 9, 1923). Over time, the company grew out to an internationally operating conglomerate with interests in steel and other metals, mining, gas and oil exploration and production and other industrial activities. In 1997 the Preussag Group systematically repositioned itself. The acquisition of companies in tourism and the disposal of nearly all of its industrial operations created a new group, and in 2002 Preussag renamed itself TUI AG. Today Preussag Group/ TUI AG is an integrated European travel group, offering the full range of services, from its own fleets of charter airplanes to travel agencies, packaged tour operations, hotel and resort accommodations, and incoming services.

Similar to the Gaudiplom, the DAF issued from 1 May 1937 onwards four separate ‘Leistungsabzeichen’ (awards) for the following achievements:
– ‘Vorbildliche Berufserziehung’ (‘for Outstanding Vocational Training Programms’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘ (‘for Outstanding Contribution to Public Health’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Heimstätten und Wohnungen‘ (‘for Providing Housing and Accommodation’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘ (‘for Outstanding Support of the KdF organisation’).
All four plaques were designed by professor Kurt Baer, goldsmith in Berlin.

Displayed at the ‘Internationalen Ausstellung Freude und Arbeit’
The four awards were displayed in room II of the Deutschlandhalle at the exhibition ‘Der Internationalen Ausstellung Freude und Arbeit’, Bukarest, June-July 1939. Depicted and described in the exhibition catalogue: ‘In die Wände eingelassen sind vier von Professor Baer entworfene Ehrenzeichen, die von der Deutschen Arbeitsfront solchen Betriebe verliehen werden, die in der Förderung von ‘Kraft durch Freude’, in der Lehrlingausbildung, im Werksiedlungsbau und in der Durchführung von Gesundheitsmassnahmen Vorbildliches leisten’.
The files of the Süddeutsche Zeitung also mention Professor Kurt Baer as designer of the DAF-plaques.

In Bucharest the opening of the ‘Internationalen Ausstellung Freude und Arbeit’ (1939) took place in the presence of King Carol of Rumania. The photo (in possession of the New York Public Library) shows German Labor Front Leader Dr. Ley explaining a diorama of a Model Community in the German exhibit area to the King. A year earlier the exposition was held in the cities of Athens (May) and Rome (June).

Left: Leistungsabzeichen ‘für Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘. Depicted in ‘Betriebliche Sozialpolitik der Deutsche Werke Kiel AG 1933-1945‘, 2000, Magisterarbeit by Daniel Bejamin Roth.
Middle: Leistungsabzeichen ‘für Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘, depicted on the back of the magazin ‘Der Schulungsbrief’, – Der Reichsorganisationsleiter der NSDAP, Edition 5, 1938.
Right: Leistungsabzeichen ‘für Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘, depicted in ‘Das Taschenbuch Schönheit der Arbeit’.
       

Leistungsabzeichen ‘für Vorbildliche Heimstätten und Wohnungen‘. Depicted in ‘Betriebliche Sozialpolitik der Deutsche Werke Kiel AG 1933-1945‘, 2000, Magisterarbeit by Daniel Bejamin Roth. 

Leistungsabzeichen ‘für Vorbildliche Berufserziehung, depicted in a company magazine of Hille Werke AG, Dresden, July 1940 (magazine is in the possession of the Deutsches Historisches Museum).

Left: ‘Leistungsabzeichen für Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘. Depicted in the Süddeutsche Zeitung, 1938.
Right: ‘Leistungsabzeichen für Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘ from the ‘Hugo Junkers Werke’ in Dessau. Photo: Landesarchiv Sachsen-Anhalt.
 

– condition : II   treated with a preserve (linseed oil and graphite, removable)
– size : 73 x 53 cm
– signed : created between 1937 and 1944. Two foundry marks at the back of Preussag
– type : iron cast, weight 21 kg

============================================ § ============================================

BACKGROUND STORY: COMPANIES UNDER NATIONAL SOCIALISM

‘Leistungskampf der Betriebe’ or ‘Battle of the Businesses’
As part of the synchronization of all state and social institutions under National Socialism (a process known as ‘Gleichschaltung’), the trade unions were dissolved in 1933 and their functions transferred to the Deutsche Arbeiters Front (DAF, German Labor Front). According to DAF’s philosophy, the German worker should become ‘an equal and respected member of the nation’. Intented was to unite working people, regardless of status or job, and to establish a National Socialist model for working life. A National Socialist company should be a living community, in which the factory leader and employee’s work together to promote its operational goals, for the common benefit of the entire economy and hence for the good of the people and the state. Company regulations governed working conditions, the care of employee’s, the maintenance of the factory community, and social welfare measures (‘Mahr exactly, -The history of a family enterprise since 1861’, 2017).

From 1935 onwards, the DAF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’ (‘Beauty of Labor’, founded in November 1933) organized campaigns to clean up and improve the workplaces of Germany’s industrial workers. Well known progressive campaigns by Beauty of Labor were ‘Sonne und Grün allen Schaffenden’ (‘Sun and Green for All Workers’), ‘Kampf dem Lärm’ (‘Battle against Noise’), ‘Gutes Licht –Gute Arbeit’ (‘Good Light – Good Work’) and ‘Gesunde Luft’ (‘Healthy Air’).

Gaudiplom and DAF-Leistungsabzeichen
In 1934 the concept of the ‘Leistungskampf der Betriebe’ (‘Battle of the Businesses’) was developed. From 1937 onwards the German Labor Front began awarding Gaudiplome to private and public institutions -industrial companies, banks, breweries, post offices- for outstanding achievement. The iron Gaudiplom plaque -with the DAF emblem in the middle- was fixed to the wall of the institution earning the award. It was awarded for one year at the time. Only Aryan companies were able to get the award.

Similar to the Gaudiplom, the DAF issued from 1 May 1937 onwards four separate ‘Leistungsabzeichen’ (awards) for the following achievements:
– ‘Vorbildliche Berufserziehung’ (‘for Outstanding Vocational Training Programms’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘ (‘for Outstanding Contribution to Public Health’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Heimstätten und Wohnungen‘ (‘for Providing Housing and Accommodation’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘ (‘for Outstanding Support of the KdF organisation’).

‘NS-Musterbetrieb’ – National Socialist Model Company

Some of the companies awarded the Gaudiplom or one of the four DAF-Leistungsabzeichen, who demonstrated an ‘exemplary National Socialist attitude and structure’ were chosen to be ‘NS-Musterbetrieb’ (National Socialist Model Company), the highest honor. As well as rewarding performance, the ‘NS-Musterbetrieb’ award also contained a strong social element. In the words of the German Labor Front ‘It is the task of our German companies, in the interests of social and economic success, to achieve the right balance between leadership and economic endeavor, social performance and economic success’. At the instigation of the DAF, canteens, rest rooms, libraries, sports and sanitary facilities were set up in factories, and social evenings and factory sports days organized. The costs had to be borne by the businesses themselves.

The main assessment criteria for winning this ‘Model Enterprise Certificate’, determined by the DAF as well as by the Chambers of Industry, Commerce and Economics, included: the architecture and upkeep of the buildings; the design and maintenance of green spaces; the standard of work spaces, especially with regard to cleanliness, lighting, wall colours and ventilation’; the quality of bath- and washrooms;  the ornamentation of the factory’s interior with paintings and sculptures, and the provision and condition of canteens and community rooms, radio’s’, outdoor relaxation spaces, roof gardens equipped with spaces to sit and lie down, parade grounds, kindergartens, holiday homes, factory-owned flats for workers and homes for single mothers.
The NS-Musterbetrieb distinction, approved by Hitler on August 29, 1936, was awarded for one year at the time.

‘Kriegsmusterbetrieb’ – Exemplary War Company
After the outbrake of Wordl War II the social objectives of the National Socialist Model factory faded into the background.

In 1942 the NS-Musterbetrieb reward transitioned to the award of ‘Kriegsmusterbetrieb’ (‘Exemplary War Company’) and increased productivity, rationalization and labor savings became the main criteria.

Left: ‘Schöne Arbeitsstätten – Grosse Arbeitsfreude’ (‘Clean Work Sites – Joy of Working’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’, 1934, depicting what a pleasant, cleaned up, well-mentained factory should look like compared to the sort of dirty, gloomy, chaotic site DAF/KdF wanted to eliminate.
Right: ‘Arbeitsfreude durch grüne Werkhöfe’ (‘Joy of Working with green Workplaces’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’. Depicted in black and white in ‘Arbeitertum. Blätter für Theorie und Praxis der Nationalsozialistische Betriebszellen Organisation’, May 15, 1935; and in ‘Die Form, Zeitschrift für Gestaltende Arbeit’, Heft 7, 1935.
   

The ‘Arbeitsfreude’ campaign poster, displayed at the exhibition ‘Symptom Bauhaus’, September 2019 – January 2020, West Museumkwartier, former American Embassy, The Hague.

The ‘Arbeitsfreude’ campaign poster, displayed at the exhibition ‘Nazi Design’, Design Museum Den Bosch, The Netherlands, 8 September 2019 -1 March 2020. This world-wide highly publicized exhibition attracted over 130.000 visitors in six months. The exhibition was covered on the front page of the New York Times and Bild, and i.a. in the Guardian, Le Monde, Le Figaro, Paris Match, Spiegel, Welt, Tagesspiegel, El Pais and all Dutch newspapers. On television the exposition was covered i.a. by the ARD, ZDF, DW News, Aljazeera, AFP News Agency, SBS World News, and all mayor television chanels in The Netherlands. Because of the enormous popularity of the exhibition, the museum extended opening hours, opened its doors also on Mondays, and finally it extended the exhibition by 6 weeks.

Left: ‘Sonne und Grün, allen Schaffenden’ (‘Sun and Green for All Workers’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’.
Right: ‘Schönheit der Arbeit,  Wir Helfen Mit’ (‘Beauty of Labor, We Support’).  Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’.
   

‘Arbeitsfreude, durch saubere Waschräume’ (‘Joy of Working’, with Clean Washing Rooms’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’.

‘Arbeitsfreude, durch freundliche Werkplätze (‘Joy of Working’, with pleasant Workspaces’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’.
‘Arbeitsfreude, durch schöne Werkkantinen'(‘Joy of Working’, with nice Work Canteens’). Campaign poster of the DAF/KdF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’.
Both posters depicted in ‘Die Form, Zeitschrift für Gestaltende Arbeit’, Heft 7, 1935.

Two posters displayed at the exhibition ‘Ehemals jüdischer Besitz‘, Stadtmuseum Munich, 2018.
Left: ‘Leistungskampf der Deutschen Betriebe’, campaign poster.
Right: poster of the exhibition ‘Ausstellung Schönheit der Arbeit und die Arbeit in der Kunst’, 1937, Munich. Size 119 x 84 cm.

Left: The ‘Leistungskampf’ campaign poster, displayed at the exhibition ‘Nazi Design’, Design Museum Den Bosch, The Netherlands, 8 September 2019 -1 March 2020.
Right: ‘Leistungskampf der Deutsche Betriebe’, 1938/39. ‘Das Ziel: Nationalsozialistischer Musterbetrieb’.
   

Worker affixing the Gaudiplom to the façade of the Berliner Bürgerbräu, Berlin’s oldest beer brewery (1753). Date unknown.

Gaudiplom awarded to the Leipziger Versicherungs Gemeinschaft am Dittrichring. Published in their company magazin on 1 June 1941.

‘Leistungskampf der deutschen Betriebe’, Decree of Hitler on August 29, 1936
‘Betrieben, in denen der Gedanke der nationalsozialistischen Betriebsgemeinschaft im Sinne des Gesetzes zur Ordnung der nationalen Arbeit und im Geiste der Deutschen Arbeitsfront vom Führer des Betriebes und seiner Gefolgschaft auf das vollkommenste verwirklicht ist, kann die Auszeichnung “Nationalsozialistischer Musterbetrieb” verliehen werden. Die Auszeichnung erfolgt durch mich oder eine von mir beauftragte Stelle. der Deutschen Arbeitsfront. Die Verleihung der Auszeichnung erfolgt auf die Dauer eines Jahres, sie7 kann wiederholt erfolgen. Die Auszeichnung wird zurückgenommen, wenn die Voraussetzungen für diese Verleihung nicht mehr gegeben sind. Die Verleihung erfolgt am Nationalfeiertag des Deutschen Volkes und geschieht durch Aushändigung einer Urkunde an den Führer des Betriebes. Die Verleihungsurkunde hat die Gründe anzugeben, die für die Verleihung maßgebend sind. Ein Betrieb, dem die Auszeichnung “Nationalsozialistischer Musterbetrieb” verliehen ist, ist berechtigt, die Flagge der Deutschen Arbeitsfront mit goldenem Rade und goldenen Fransen zu führen. Die Verfügung tritt sofort in Kraft’.
München, 29 August 1936 gez. Adolf Hitler.’

‘Nationalsozialistischer Musterbetrieb‘, zinc plaque. Size 48,5 x 38,5 cm.

‘Nationalsozialistischer Musterbetrieb‘, plaque depicted in ‘Herz oder Fassade, Frontberichte vom Leistungskampf saarpfälzischer Betriebe Paperback – 1939‘.

Left: Plaques of Gaudiplom, Leistungsabzeichen (3 out of 4) and Musterbetrieb, depicted in ‘Das Dritte Reich, Dokumentarische Darstellung des Aufbaues der Nation‘, 1938.
Right: the plaques of Leistungsabzeichen and Musterbetrieb, depicted on the cover of ‘Banken und Versicherungen im Leistungskampf der Deutschen Betriebe’, Hamburg 1938.   

Gaudiplom and Leistungsabzeichen, depicted in the May and November 1941 editions of ‘Astra-Warte’, the company magazine of Astrawerke in Chemnitz. Source: Sächsisches Staatsarchiv, 31092 Astrawerke AG, Chemnitz, Nr. 68.
   

—————————————————————————————————————————————————–

BIOGRAPHY: PROF. KURT BAER, GOLDSMITH

Left: Kurt Baer, two works depicted in ‘Kunst und Handwerk am Oberrhein, Jahrbuch des Badischen Kunstgewerbevereins und des Kunstgewerbevereins Pforzheim’, 1926/27.
Right: Kurt Baer, works depicted in ‘Kunst und Handwerk’, 1930.
   

In January 1931 the magazine ‘Die Kunst’ published a special article about Baer. In ‘Ein moderne Goldschmied: Kurt Baer’ (‘A modern Goldschmith: Kurt Baer’), he was praised as a brilliant representative of a new generation of goldsmiths focused on ‘Modern Industrial Design’.
   

Kurt Baer, two pages with his works depicted in ‘Die Kunstkammer’, Mai 1935. The depicted works with the arms of the city of Pforzheim executed in gold, were a gift to the leaving mayor of Pforzheim. The article is signed ‘Goldschmiedemeister Kurt Baer, Berlin’.

Left: Kurt Baer, ‘Silberner Schöpflöffel mit Tablett’ (‘Silver Ladle with Tray’). Depicted in ‘Die Kunstkammer’, July 1935.
Right: Kurt Baer, ‘Sportpreis aus Silber und Glas’ (‘Sportprice made of Silver and Glass’). Depicted in ‘Die Kunstkammer’, October 1935.
   

Kurt Baer, Fountain in the city of Wolgast, 1938. Baer created 10 tables with historical depictions related to the city.
   

Kurt Baer, ‘Erinnerungsplaketten Olympische Spielen 1936’ (‘1936 Olympic Games Commemorative Plaque’). Executed in bronze and iron. Size 20 x 19 cm. Depicted is the Brandenburg Gate in front of Olympic Stadium.
Described in: ‘Erinnerungsplaketten aus Eisen’ in the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung Nr. 302/03 of 2. Juli 1936: ‘Indem die Kunstgießerei Gleiwitz der Preußischen Bergwerks- und Hütten-Aktiengesellschaft zwei gußeiserne Erinnerungsplaketten an das Olympia 1936 herausbringt, folgt sie einer Anregung der Reichskammer der bildenden Künste. Mit dem Entwurf der Plaketten wurden die Herren Krückeberg und Professor Baer betraut’.
Left: ‘Erinnerungsplakette Olympische Spielen 1936’, executed in iron.
Right: the Erinnerungsplakette depicted in ‘Gleiwitzer Kunstguss, -Preussische Bergwergs und Hütten Akt. Ges., Betriebstelle Kunstgiesserie Gleiwitz, -Nachtrag 1938’ (the plaque on the right page is by Krückeberg).
   

Left: the Erinnerungsplakette executed in bronze.
Right: the backside with the foundry marks. Left the Preussag-schield and right the ‘Königliches Hüttenambt Gleiwitz’ (HAG). 
   

Kurt Baer, ‘Deutsche Arbeitsfront Besteck’. ‘German Labor Front’-cutlery, designed in 1938 by Baer. Produced by the company Heimendahl und Keller’ in the city of Hilden. Some copies are in the possession of the Wilhelm-Fabry Museum in Hilden.
The monogram ‘M.D.A. Sch.A.’ stands for: ‘Modell des Ambtes Schönheit der Arbeit’ (model of the Bureau of the Beauty of Labor’, a department of the German Labor Organisation. Lenghts up to 24 cm.
     

Left: Kurt Baer, cast iron oven plate, depicting the centre of Berlin. Depicted in ‘Gleiwitzer Kunstguss, -Preussische Bergwergs und Hütten Akt. Ges., Betriebstelle Kunstgiesserie Gleiwitz, -Nachtrag 1938’. With inscription: ‘Am 30 Januar 1933 erwachte das deutsche Volk zu neuem Leben dank seinem Führer‘ (‘German People awakened to New Life at 30 January 1933, thanks to the Führer‘).
Right: Kurt Baer, cast iron relief with depiction of the city of Nuremberg. With inscription: ‘Nicht Jeder von Euch Sieht Mich und nicht Jeden von Euch sehe Ich aber ich Fühle euch und Ihr Fühlt Mich‘ (‘Not everyone can see Me and I cannot see Everyone but I do feel You and You feel Me‘).
   

15 million Iron Roses by Kurt Baer
Left: Kurt Baer, ‘Eiserne Rose, WHW-Ansteckabzeichen’ (‘Iron Rose, Winterhilfswerk des Deutschen Volkes-badge’). Depicted in the catalog ‘Gleiwitzer Kunstguss, -Preussische Bergwergs und Hütten Akt. Ges., Betriebstelle Kunstgiesserie Gleiwitz, -Nachtrag 1938’. In January 1937 15 million of these ‘Iron Rose’ badges were created and offered to the public.
Right: WHW-campaign poster, depicting the ‘Iron Rose’ by Kurt Baer.
The Winterhilfswerk des Deutschen Volkes was an annual drive by the National Socialist People’s Welfare (Nationalsozialistische Volkswohlfahrt) to help finance charitable work. Its slogan was ‘None shall starve or freeze’ The drive was originally set up under the government of Heinrich Brüning in 1931, though Adolf Hitler would later claim sole credit. It ran from 1933 to 1945 during the months of October through March and was designed to provide food, clothing, coal and other items to less fortunate Germans during the inclement months.
Below: an Iron Rose by Baer, depicted in 2020. 
   

Januar 1937, 15 million ‘Eiserne Rosen’ by Kurt Baer were created, good for 500 tons of iron (‘NS-Presseanweisungen der Vorkriegszeit’, Gabriele Toepler-Ziegert, 1993).

 

Professor Kurt Baer, goldsmith
Kurt Baer (1900 – 1945) was a German goldsmith. In the 1920s and 1930s he worked in Pforzheim, where he had his atelier in the Lindenstasse 56. In 1922 Baer, member of the Bayerischer Kuntgewerbe Verein, won the silver medal (‘für anerkennenswerte Leistungen und Fortschritt die die Goldschmiedearbeiten aufweisen’) issued by the König Ludwigs Preiss Stiftung in Munich. In the same year at the ‘Schmuck-Entwurf Wettbetrieb’ (jewellery-design competition) of the ‘Deutsche Goldschmiede Zeitung’ in Munich, Kurt Baer ‘Goldschmied Pforzheim-München’, received a Commendation (‘Kunst und Handwerk’, Heft 1/2, 1922).
In 1929 he became Head of the Jewellery-design Class (‘Schmuckzeichenklasse’) at the School of Arts and Crafts in Pforzheim. 
In January 1931 the magazine ‘Die Kunst’ published a special article about Baer. In ‘Ein moderne Goldschmied: Kurt Baer’ (‘A modern Goldschmith: Kurt Baer’), he was praised as a brilliant representative of a new generation of goldsmiths focused on Modern Industrial Design. In May 1935 works by Kurt Baer were depicted on two full pages in ‘Die Kunstkammer’. The shown works with the arms of the city of Pforzheim executed in gold, were a gift to the leaving mayor of Pforzheim. The article was signed ‘Goldschmiedemeister Kurt Baer, Berlin’; apparantly he had moved to Berlin halfway the 1930s. 
In 1936 Kurt Baer designed the ‘Erinnerungsplaketten Olympische Spielen’ (‘1936 Olympic Games Commemorative Plaque’). The plaque, executed in bronze and iron, depicted the Brandenburg Gate in front of Olympic Stadium. Described in: ‘Erinnerungsplaketten aus Eisen’ in the Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung Nr. 302/03 of 2. Juli 1936: ‘Indem die Kunstgießerei Gleiwizt der Preußischen Bergwerks- und Hütten-Aktiengesellschaft zwei gußeiserne Erinnerungsplaketten an das Olympia 1936 herausbringt, folgt sie einer Anregung der Reichskammer der bildenden Künste. Mit dem Entwurf der Plaketten wurden die Herren Krückeberg und Professor Baer betraut’.
Here in the Deutsche Algemeine Zeitung of July 1936 Baer was for the first time mentioned as ‘Professor’.
After 1933 Baer became designer for the DAF department ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’. From 1935 onwards, ‘Schönheit der Arbeit’ (‘Beauty of Labor’, founded in November 1933) organized campaigns to clean up and improve the workplaces of Germany’s industrial workers. Well known progressive campaigns by Beauty of Labor were ‘Sonne und Grün allen Schaffenden’ (‘Sun and Green for All Workers’), ‘Kampf dem Lärm’ (‘Battle against Noise’), ‘Gutes Licht –Gute Arbeit’ (‘Good Light – Good Work’) and ‘Gesunde Luft’ (‘Healthy Air’).

15 million Iron Roses by Kurt Baer
In the end of 1936 Baer designed the ‘Eiserne Rose, WHW-Ansteckabzeichen’ (‘the Iron Rose, Winterhilfswerk des Deutschen Volkes-badge’). Depicted in the catalog ‘Gleiwitzer Kunstguss, -Preussische Bergwergs und Hütten Akt. Ges., Betriebstelle Kunstgiesserie Gleiwitz, -Nachtrag 1938’. In Januar 1937, 15 million ‘Eiserne Rosen’ by Kurt Baer were created and offered to the public, -good for 500 tons of iron (‘NS-Presseanweisungen der Vorkriegszeit’, Gabriele Toepler-Ziegert, 1993).

The Winterhilfswerk des Deutschen Volkes was an annual drive by the National Socialist People’s Welfare (Nationalsozialistische Volkswohlfahrt) to help finance charitable work. Its slogan was ‘None shall starve or freeze’ The drive was originally set up under the government of Heinrich Brüning in 1931, though Adolf Hitler would later claim sole credit. It ran from 1933 to 1945 during the months of October through March and was designed to provide food, clothing, coal and other items to less fortunate Germans during the inclement months.

In 1938 Baer designed the ‘Deutsche Arbeitsfront Besteck’ (German Labor Front-cutlery). It was produced i.a. by the company Heimendahl und Keller’ in the city of Hilden. Some copies are in the possession of the Wilhelm-Fabry Museum in Hilden. The forks , knives and spoons beare the monogram ‘M.D.A. Sch.A.’, which stands for: ‘Modell des Ambtes Schönheit der Arbeit’ (model of the Bureau of the Beauty of Labor’).
In 1938 a fountain in the city of Wolgast was revealed, designed by Baer, with 10 tables with historical depictions related to the city.
Similar to the Gaudiplom, the DAF issued from 1 May 1937 onwards four separate ‘Leistungsabzeichen’ for companies. The awards, heavy iron plaques measuring 73 x 53 cm cast by Preussag/ Kunstgiessei Gleiwitz, were designed by Kurt Baer. They were granted for the following achievements:
– ‘Vorbildliche Berufserziehung’ (‘for Outstanding Vocational Training Programms’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Sorge um die Volksgesundheit‘ (‘for Outstanding Contribution to Public Health’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Heimstätten und Wohnungen‘ (‘for Providing Housing and Accommodation’);
– ‘Vorbildliche Förderung von Kraft durch Freude‘ (‘for Outstanding Support of the KdF organisation’).
The four DAF awards by Baer were displayed in room II of the Deutschlandhalle at the exhibition ‘Der Internationalen Ausstellung Freude und Arbeit’, Bukarest, June-July 1939. The opening of the exhibition, earlier also held in Rome and Athens, took place in the presence of King Carol of Rumania and German Labor Front Leader Dr. Ley. The four displayed DAF works by Baer were depicted and described in the exhibition catalogue: ‘In die Wände eingelassen sind vier von Professor Baer entworfene Ehrenzeichen, die von der Deutschen Arbeitsfront solchen Betriebe verliehen werden, die in der Förderung von ‘Kraft durch Freude’, in der Lehrlingausbildung, im Werksiedlungsbau und in der Durchführung von Gesundheitsmassnahmen Vorbildliches leisten’.  
The files of the Süddeutsche Zeitung also mention Professor Kurt Baer as designer of the DAF-plaques.

Baer was drafted into the Wehrmacht on 28 August 1939. He left the army a few months later for unknown reasons. During his time in the army he made a series of photos which show Warsaw and other parts of Poland in the first days after the invasion of September 1939. This collection of 134 historical valuable photos are since 2019 on display in the Warsaw Rising Museum.

The First News, January 31, 2019
In September 1939, when German forces were running riot acros Poland, Wehrmach soldier Kurt Baer was serving in a supply unit. As he followed the frontline through central P{oland, he spent some of his time taking photographs of the results of Germany’s blizrkrieg campaign.
Sometimes this woud be of a building in Warsaw damaged by Luftwafe handiwork, sometimes it would be a group of desparate internal refugees seeking safety in the capital, and sometimes it would be a street scen of life under the newly imposed occupation.
His photogrpahs form a catalogue of many of Warsaw’s most important pre-war buildings, including: the Lubomirski Palace at the Plac Zelaznej Bramy, the former stock exchange building on the Krolewska stee tand the Wooden Bell Tower that used to stand next to the church on Plac Narutowicza.     

Professor Kurt Baer died in 1945; the cause of his death is unknown.