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Movements Dada

Dada

Started: 1916

Ended: 1924

Quotes

"Dada does not mean anything.. We read in the papers that the Negroes of the Kroo race call the tail of the sacred cow: dada. A cube, and a mother, in certain regions of Italy, are called: Dada. The word for a hobby-horse, a children's nurse, a double affirmative in Russian and Rumanian, is also: Dada."
Tristan Tzara
"Words emerge, shoulders of words, legs, arms, hands of words. Au, oi, uh. One shouldn't let too many words out. A line of poetry is a chance to get rid of all the filth that clings to this accursed language, as if put there by stockbrokers' hands, hands worn smooth by coins. I want the word where it ends and begins. Dada is the heart of words."
Hugo Ball's manifesto
"We attempted perfection; we wanted an object to be without flaw, so we cut the papers with a razor, pasted them down meticulously, but it buckled and was ruined... that is why we decided to tear prewrinkled paper, so that in the finished work of art imperfection would be an integral part, as if at birth death were built in."
Hans Arp
Every word that is spoken and sung here (the Cabaret Voltaire) represents at least this one thing: that this humiliating age has not succeeded in winning our respect.
Hugo Ball
Dada is like your hopes: nothing
like your paradise: nothing
like your idols: nothing
like your heroes: nothing
like your artists: nothing
like your religions: nothing
Francis Picabia
I speak only of myself since I do not wish to convince, I have no right to drag others into my river, I oblige no one to follow me and everybody practices his art in his own way
Tristan Tzara - Dada Manifesto 1918

KEY ARTISTS

Francis PicabiaFrancis Picabia
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Francis Picabia Page
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Marcel DuchampMarcel Duchamp
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Marcel Duchamp Page
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Man RayMan Ray
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Man Ray Page
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André BretonAndré Breton
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André Breton Page
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Hans ArpHans Arp
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Hans Arp Page
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Tristan TzaraTristan Tzara
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Kurt SchwittersKurt Schwitters
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Hugo BallHugo Ball
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Hannah HöchHannah Höch
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Hannah Höch Page
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"DADA, as for it, it smells of nothing, it is nothing, nothing, nothing."

Synopsis

Dada was an artistic and literary movement that began in Zürich, Switzerland. It arose as a reaction to World War I and the nationalism that many thought had led to the war. Influenced by other avant-garde movements - Cubism, Futurism, Constructivism, and Expressionism - its output was wildly diverse, ranging from performance art to poetry, photography, sculpture, painting, and collage. Dada's aesthetic, marked by its mockery of materialistic and nationalistic attitudes, proved a powerful influence on artists in many cities, including Berlin, Hanover, Paris, New York, and Cologne, all of which generated their own groups. The movement dissipated with the establishment of Surrealism.

Key Ideas

Dada was the first conceptual art movement where the focus of the artists was not on crafting aesthetically pleasing objects but on making works that often upended bourgeois sensibilities and that generated difficult questions about society, the role of the artist, and the purpose of art.
So intent were members of Dada on opposing all norms of bourgeois culture that the group was barely in favor of itself: "Dada is anti-Dada," they often cried. The group's founding in the Cabaret Voltaire in Zürich was appropriate: the Cabaret was named after the eighteenth century French satirist, Voltaire, whose novella Candide mocked the idiocies of his society. As Hugo Ball, one of the founders of both the Cabaret and Dada wrote, "This is our Candide against the times."
Artists like Hans Arp were intent on incorporating chance into the creation of works of art. This went against all norms of traditional art production whereby a work was meticulously planned and completed. The introduction of chance was a way for Dadaists to challenge artistic norms and to question the role of the artist in the artistic process.
Dada artists are known for their use of readymade objects - everyday objects that could be bought and presented as art with little manipulation by the artist. The use of the readymade forced questions about artistic creativity and the very definition of art and its purpose in society.

Most Important Art

Fountain (1917)
Artist: Marcel Duchamp
Duchamp was the first artist to use a readymade and his choice of a urinal was guaranteed to challenge and offend even his fellow artists. There is little manipulation of the urinal by the artist other than to turn it upside-down and to sign it with a fictitious name. By removing the urinal from its everyday environment and placing it in an art context, Duchamp was questioning basic definitions of art as well as the role of the artist in creating it. With the title, Fountain, Duchamp made a tongue in cheek reference to both the purpose of the urinal as well to famous fountains designed by Renaissance and Baroque artists. In its path-breaking boldness the work has become iconic of the irreverence of the Dada movement towards both traditional artistic values and production techniques. Its influence on later twentieth century artists such as Jeff Koons, Robert Rauschenberg, Damien Hirst, and others is incalculable.
Urinal - Philadelphia Museum of Art
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Beginnings

Switzerland was neutral during WWI with limited censorship and it was in Zürich that Hugo Ball and Emmy Hennings founded the Cabaret Voltaire on February 5, 1916 in the backroom of a tavern on Spiegelgasse in a seedy section of the city. In order to attract other artists and intellectuals, Ball put out a press release that read, "Cabaret Voltaire. Under this name a group of young artists and writers has formed with the object of becoming a center for artistic entertainment. In principle, the Cabaret will be run by artists, guests artists will come and give musical performances and readings at the daily meetings. Young artists of Zürich, whatever their tendencies, are invited to come along with suggestions and contributions of all kinds." Those who were present from the beginning in addition to Ball and Hennings were Hans Arp, Tristan Tzara, Marcel Janco, and Richard Huelsenbeck.

In July of that year, the first Dada evening was held at which Ball read the first manifesto. There is little agreement on how the word Dada was invented, but one of the most common origin stories is that Richard Huelsenbeck found the name by plunging a knife at random into a dictionary. The term "dada" is a colloquial French term for a hobbyhorse, yet it also echoes the first words of a child, and these suggestions of childishness and absurdity appealed to the group, who were keen to put a distance between themselves and the sobriety of conventional society. They also appreciated that the word might mean the same (or nothing) in all languages - as the group was avowedly internationalist.

The aim of Dada art and activities was both to help to stop the war and to vent frustration with the nationalist and bourgeois conventions that had led to it. Their anti-authoritarian stance made for a protean movement as they opposed any form of group leadership or guiding ideology.

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The Spread of Dada

Parties at Cabaret Voltaire

The artists in Zürich published a Dada magazine and held art exhibits that helped spread their anti-war, anti-art message. In 1917, after Ball left for Bern to pursue journalism, Tzara founded Galerie Dada on Bahnhofstrasse where further Dada evenings were held along with art exhibits. Tzara became the leader of the movement and began an unrelenting campaign to spread Dada ideas, showering French and Italian writers and artists with letters. The group published an art and literature review entitled Dada starting in July 1917 with five editions from Zürich and two final ones from Paris. Their art was focused on performance and printed matter.

Once the war ended in 1918, many of the artists returned to their home countries, helping to further spread the movement. The end of Dada in Zürich followed the Dada 4-5 event in April 1919 that by design turned into a riot, something that Tzara thought furthered the aims of Dada by undermining conventional art practices through audience involvement in art production. The riot, which began as a Dada event, was one of the most significant. It attracted over 1000 people and began with a conservative speech about the value of abstract art that was meant to anger the crowd. This was followed by discordant music and then several readings that encouraged crowd participation until the crowd lost control and began to destroy several of the props. Tzara described it thus: "the tumult is unchained hurricane frenzy siren whistles bombardment song the battle starts out sharply, half the audience applaud the protestors hold the hall . . . chairs pulled out projectiles crash bang expected effect atrocious and instinctive . . . Dada has succeeded in establishing the circuit of absolute unconsciousness in the audience which forgot the frontiers of education of prejudices, experienced the commotion of the New. Final victory of Dada." For Tzara the key to the success of a riot was audience involvement so that attendees were not just onlookers of art, but became involved in its production. This was a total negation of traditional art.

Soon after this, Tzara traveled to Paris, where he met André Breton and began formulating the theories that Breton would eventually call Surrealism. Dadaists did not self-consciously declare micro-regional movements; the spread of Dada throughout various European cities and into New York can be attributed to a few key artists, and each city in turn influenced the aesthetics of their respective Dada groups.

Germany

In 1917, Huelsenbeck returned from Zürich to found Club Dada in Berlin, which was active from 1918 to 1923, and included attendees such as Johannes Baader, George Grosz, Hannah Höch, and Raoul Hausmann. Closer to a war zone, the Berlin Dadaists came out publicly against the Weimar Republic and their art was more political: satirical paintings and collages that featured wartime imagery, government figures, and political cartoon clippings recontextualized into biting commentaries. In February of 1918, Huelsenbeck gave his first Dada speech in Berlin and several journals, including Club Dada and Der Dada, were published that year along with a manifesto in April. The photomontage technique was developed in Berlin during this period. In 1920 Hausmann and Huelsenbeck give a lecture tour in Dresden, Hamburg, Leipzig, and Prague. The "Erste Internationale Dada-Messe" was held in June.

Kurt Schwitters, excluded from the Berlin group likely because of his links to Der Sturm gallery and the Expressionist style, both of which were seen as antithetical to Dada because of their Romanticism and focus on aesthetics, formed his own Dada group in Hannover in 1919, though he was its only practitioner. His Merz, as he termed his art, was less politically oriented than that of the Club Dada; his works instead examine modernist preoccupations with shape and color.

Another Dada group was formed in Cologne in 1918 by Max Ernst and Johannes Theodor Baargeld. Importantly, Hans Arp joined the next year and made breakthroughs in his collage experiments. Their exhibits focused on anti-bourgeois and nonsensical art. In 1920, one such exhibit was closed down by the police. By 1922, German Dada was winding down. In that year, Ernst left Cologne for Paris, thus dissolving that group. Others became interested in other movements. A "Congress of the Constructivists", for example, was held in Weimar in October of 1922, which was attended by a number of the German Dadaists and in 1924, Breton published the Surrealist manifesto after which many of the remaining Dadaists joined that movement. Schwitter's Merz publication continued sporadically for several years.

Paris

After hearing of the Dada movement in Zürich, a number of Parisian artists including Andre Breton, Louis Aragon, Paul Eluard, and others become interested. In 1919 Tzara left Zürich for Paris and Arp arrived there from Cologne the next year; a "Dada festival" took place in May 1920 after many of the originators of the movement had converged there. There were several demonstrations, exhibitions, and performances organized along with manifestos and journals published, including Dada and Le Cannibale.

Le Groupe Dada 1922 Paris

Picabia and Breton withdrew from the movement in 1921 and Picabia published a special issue of 391 in which he claimed that Paris Dada had become the thing it originally fought against: a mediocre established movement. He wrote: "The Dada spirit really only existed between 1913 and 1918 . . . In wishing to prolong it, Dada became closed . . . Dada, you see, was not serious... and if certain people take it seriously now, it's because it is dead! . . . One must be a nomad, pass through ideas like one passes through countries and cities." Paris Dada published a counter-attack under the direction of Tzara. Two final Dada stage performances are held in Paris in 1923 before the group collapsed into internal infighting and ceded to Surrealism.

Marcel Duchamp provided a crucial creative link between the Zürich Dadaists and Parisian proto-Surrealists, like Breton. The Swiss group considered Marcel Duchamp's readymades to be Dada artworks, and they appreciated Duchamp's humor and refusal to define art.

New York

Like Zürich during the war, New York City was a refuge for writers and artists. Marcel Duchamp and Francis Picabia arrived in the city only days apart in June of 1915 and soon after met Man Ray. Duchamp served as a critical interlocutor, bringing the notion of anti-art to the group where it took a decidedly mechanistic turn. One of his most important pieces, The Large Glass or Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even, was begun in New York in 1915 and is considered to be a major Dada milestone for its depiction of a strange, erotic drama using mechanical forms.

By 1916 Duchamp, Picabia, and Man Ray were joined by the American artist Beatrice Wood and the writers Henri-Pierre Roche and Mina Loy. Much of their anti-art activity took place in Alfred Stieglitz's 291 gallery and at the studio of Walter and Louise Arensberg. Their publications, such as The Blind Man, Rongwrong, and New York Dada challenged conventional museum art with more humor and less bitterness than European groups. It was during this period that Duchamp began exhibiting readymades (found objects) such as a bottle rack, and got involved with the Society of Independent Artists. In 1917 he submitted Fountain to the Society of Independent Artists show.

Picabia's travels helped tie New York, Zürich and Paris groups together during the Dadaist period. From 1917 through 1924 he also published the Dada periodical 391, which was modeled on Stieglitz's 291 periodical. Picabia's 391 was first published in Barcelona, then in various cities including New York, Zürich, and Paris, depending on his own place of residence and with help from fellow artists and friends in the various cities. The periodical was mainly literary, however, with Picabia being the prime contributor. The 1918 Dada Manifesto had declared: "Every page must explode, whether through seriousness, profundity, turbulence, nausea, the new, the eternal, annihilating nonsense, enthusiasm for principles, or the way it is printed. Art must be unaesthetic in the extreme, useless, and impossible to justify." He broke away from Dada in 1921 as mentioned above. In addition to the special issue of 391 in which he attacked Paris Dada in 1921, in the final issue of 391 in 1924 Picabia accuses Surrealism of being a fabricated movement, writing that "artificial eggs don't make chickens."

Concepts and Styles

Poster for Salon Dada, Exposition Internationale, Galerie Montaigne, 1921

Dada artworks present intriguing overlaps and paradoxes in that they seek to demystify artwork in the populist sense but nevertheless remain cryptic enough to allow the viewer to interpret works in a variety of ways. Some Dadaists portrayed people and scenes representationally in order to analyze form and movement. Others, like Schwitters and Man Ray, practiced abstraction to express the metaphysical essence of their subject matter. Both modes sought to deconstruct daily experience in challenging and rebellious ways. The key to understanding Dada works lies in reconciling the seemingly silly, slapdash styles with the profound anti-bourgeois message. Tzara especially fought the assumption that Dada was a statement; yet Tzara and his fellow artists became increasingly agitated by politics and sought to incite a similar fury in Dada audiences.

Irreverence

Irreverence was a crucial component of Dada art, whether it was a lack of respect for bourgeois convention, government authorities, conventional production methods, or the artistic canon. Each group varied slightly in their focus, with the Berlin group being the most anti-government and the New York group being the most anti-art. Of all the groups, the Hannover group was likely the most conservative.

Readymades and Assemblage

A readymade was simply an object that already existed and was commandeered by Dada artists as a work of art, often in the process combined with another readymade, as in Duchamp's Bicycle Wheel, thus creating an assemblage. The pieces were often chosen and assembled by chance or accident to challenge bourgeois notions about art and artistic creativity. Indeed, it is difficult to completely separate conceptually the Dada interest in chance with their focus on readymades and assemblage. Several of the readymades and assemblages were bizarre, a quality that made it easy for the group to merge eventually with Surrealism. Other artists who worked with readymades and assemblages include Ernst, Man Ray, and Hausmann.

Chance

Chance was a key concept underpinning most of Dada art from the abstract and beautiful compositions of Schwitters to the large assemblages of Duchamp. Chance was used to embrace the random and the accidental as a way to release creativity from rational control, with Arp being one of the earliest and best-known practitioners. Schwitters, for example, gathered random bits of detritus from a variety of locales, while Duchamp welcomed accidents such as the crack that occurred while he was making The Large Glass. In addition to loss of rational control, Dada lack of concern with preparatory work and the embrace of artworks that were marred fit well with the Dada irreverence for traditional art methods.

Wit and Humor

Tied closely to Dada irreverence was their interest in humor, typically in the form of irony. In fact, the embrace of the readymade is key to Dada's use of irony as it shows an awareness that nothing has intrinsic value. Irony also gave the artists flexibility and expressed their embrace of the craziness of the world thus preventing them from taking their work too seriously or from getting caught up in excessive enthusiasm or dreams of utopia. Their humor is an unequivocal YES to everything as art.

Further Developments

As detailed above, after the disbanding of the various Dada groups, many of the artists joined other art movements - in particular Surrealism. In fact, Dada's tradition of irrationality and chance led directly to the Surrealist love for fantasy and expression of the imaginary. Several artists were members of both groups, including Picabia, Arp, and Ernst since their works acted as a catalyst in ushering in an art based on a relaxation of conscious control over art production. Though Duchamp was not a Surrealist, he helped to curate exhibitions in New York that showcased both Dada and Surrealist works.

Dada, the first conceptual art movement, is now considered a watershed moment in twentieth-century art. Postmodernism as we know it would not exist without Dada. Almost every underlying postmodern theory in visual and written art as well as in music and drama was invented or at least utilized by Dada artists: art as performance, the overlapping of art with everyday life, the use of popular culture, audience participation, the interest in non-Western forms of art, the embrace of the absurd, and the use of chance.

Most of the artistic movements since Dada can trace their influence to that group. Other than the obvious examples of Surrealism, Neo-Dada, and Conceptual art, these would include Pop Art, Fluxus, the Situationist International, Performance art, Feminist art, and Minimalism. Dada also had a profound influence on graphic design and the field of advertising with their use of collage.

Content compiled and written by The Art Story Contributors

Edited and published by The Art Story Contributors

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Useful Resources on Dada

Books
Websites
Articles
Videos
The books and articles below constitute a bibliography of the sources used in the writing this page. These also suggest some accessible resources for further research, especially ones that can be found and purchased via the internet.
Dada: Zürich, Berlin, Hannover, Cologne, New York, Paris

By Dorothea Dietrich, Brigid Doherty, Sabine Kriebel, Leah Dickerman

The Dada Painters and Poets: An Anthology, Second Edition (Paperbacks in Art History)

By Robert Motherwell

Dada: Art and Anti-Art (World of Art)

By Hans Richter

Dada & Surrealism (Art and Ideas)

By Matthew Gale

National Gallery of Art Dada Archive

International Dada Archive

Project by The University of Iowa Libraries

From Dada to Surrealism - Review

By Phillippe Dagen
The Guardian Weekly (UK)
July 19, 2011

No Nonsense about Dada - Review of MoMA Exhibition

By Clare Hurley
World Socialist Web Site
September 18, 2006

Our Art Belongs to Dada

By Martin Filler
Departures
March/April 2006

Dada's Big Mama

By Leah Ollman
Los Angeles Times
June 22, 1997

Cubism
Cubism
Cubism
Cubism was developed by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque between 1907-1911, and it continued to be highly influential long after its decline. This classic phase has two stages: 'Analytic', in which forms seem to be 'analyzed' and fragmented; and 'Synthetic', in which pre-existing materials such as newspaper and wood veneer are collaged to the surface of the canvas.
ArtStory: Cubism
Futurism
Futurism
Futurism
Futurism was the most influential Italian avant-garde movement of the twentieth century. Dedicated to the modern age, it celebrated speed, movement, machinery and violence. At first influenced by Neo-Impressionism, and later by Cubism, some of its members were also drawn to mass culture and nontraditional forms of art.
ArtStory: Futurism
Constructivism
Constructivism
Constructivism
Russian Constructivism emerged with the Revolution of 1917 and sought a new approach to making objects, one which abolished the traditional concern with composition and replaced it with 'construction,' which called for a new attention to the technical character of materials. It was hoped that these inquiries would yield ideas for mass production. The movement was an important influence on geometric abstraction.
ArtStory: Constructivism
Expressionism
Expressionism
Expressionism
Expressionism is a broad term for a host of movements in early twentieth-century Germany and beyond, from Die Brücke (1905) and Der Blaue Reiter (1911) to the early Neue Sachlichkeit painters in the 1920s and '30s. Many Expressionists used vivid colors and abstracted forms to create spiritually or psychologically intense works, while others focused on depictions of war, alienation, and the modern city.
ArtStory: Expressionism
Surrealism
Surrealism
Surrealism
Perhaps the most influential avant-garde movement of the century, Surrealism was founded in Paris in 1924 by a small group of writers and artists who sought to channel the unconscious as a means to unlock the power of the imagination. Much influenced by Freud, they believed that the conscious mind repressed the power of the imagination. Influenced also by Marx, they hoped that the psyche had the power to reveal the contradictions in the everyday world and spur on revolution.
ArtStory: Surrealism
Hugo Ball
Hugo Ball
Hugo Ball
Hugo Ball was a German-born author, poet and artist who is credited with leading the Dada movement in Zurich. In 1916, Ball penned the Dada Manifesto, in which he claimed that he coined the term 'Dada' by randomly choosing the word from the dictionary.
Hugo Ball
Hans Arp
Hans Arp
Hans Arp
Hans Arp (also known as Jean Arp) was a German-French artist who incorporated chance, randomness, and organic forms into his sculptures, paintings, and collages. He was involved with Zurich Dada, Surrealism, and the Abstraction-Creation movement.
ArtStory: Hans Arp
Tristan Tzara
Tristan Tzara
Tristan Tzara
Tristan Tzara was a Romanian and French poet, playwright, and avant-garde performer who played a key role in early Zurich Dada. A proponent of pure automatic techniques, he had an at-times contentious relationship with the Dada's Surrealist direction in Paris.
Tristan Tzara
Marcel Janco
Marcel Janco
Marcel Janco
Marcel Janco was a Romanian and Israeli visual artist, architect, and art theorist. He was the co-founder of Dada and a proponent of Constructivism in Western Europe, and his work was widely regarded as avant-garde and innovative.
Marcel Janco
Richard Huelsenbeck
Richard Huelsenbeck
Richard Huelsenbeck
Richard Huelsenbeck was a German poet, writer and musician. He was a founding member of the Berlin Dada group and was the editor of the Dada Almanach. When he later moved to New York City, he practiced Jungian psychoanalysis under the name Charles R. Hulbeck.
Richard Huelsenbeck
André Breton
André Breton
André Breton
André Breton, author of the 1924 Surrealist Manifesto, was an influential theorizer of both Dada and Surrealism. Born in France, he emigrated to New York during World War II, where he greatly influenced the Abstract Expressionists.
ArtStory: André Breton
Johannes Baader
Johannes Baader
Johannes Baader
Johannes Baader was a German writer and artist associated with the Dada movement in Berlin. Baader gave public performances wherein he decried the clergy, laity and politicians, which resulted in his brief arrest. In several of his works, he wryly declared himself the president of the universe.
Johannes Baader
George Grosz
George Grosz
George Grosz
George Grosz was a German Dada and Neue Sachlichkeit artist. He was enamored of America and highly critical of Weimar society. Grosz immigrated to the United States just as Hitler came to power and opened a private art school in Des Moines.
ArtStory: George Grosz
Hannah Höch
Hannah Höch
Hannah Höch
Hannah Hoch was a German-born Dada artist. She and Raoul Hausmann were among the first artists to work in photomontage. Hoch is most famous for her works dating from the Weimar years, most notably 1919's 'Cut with the Dada Kitchen Knife through the Last Weimar Beer-Belly Cultural Epoch in Germany,' which critiqued Weimar Germany.
ArtStory: Hannah Höch
Raoul Hausmann
Raoul Hausmann
Raoul Hausmann
Raoul Hausmann was an Austrian artist and writer. He was a key figure in the Berlin Dada movement and on January 22, 1918 delivered his 'First Dada Speech in Germany.' Hausmann and Hannah Hoch were among the first artists to work in photomontage.
Raoul Hausmann
Max Ernst
Max Ernst
Max Ernst
Max Ernst was a German Dadaist and Surrealist whose paintings and collages combine dream-like realism, automatic techniques, and eerie subject matter.
ArtStory: Max Ernst
Louis Aragon
Louis Aragon
Louis Aragon
Louis Aragon was a French poet and writer, as well as journalist and editor for several revolutionary and avant-garde journals. He was involved with the Dada circle in Paris before helping found Surrealism in 1924.
Louis Aragon
Paul Eluard
Paul Eluard
Paul Eluard
Paul Eluard was a French poet, and one of the original participants in the French Surrealism movement, forming strong ties with the likes of Breton, Aragon and Ernst. Eluard was also active in the French Resistance during World War II, but later in life joined the Communist Party, became a Stalin sympathizer and renounced the Surrealism movement.
Paul Eluard
Marcel Duchamp
Marcel Duchamp
Marcel Duchamp
The French artist Marcel Duchamp was an instrumental figure in the avant-garde art worlds of Paris and New York. Moving through Dada, Surrealism, readymades, sculpture, and installation, his work involves conceptual play and an implicit attack on bourgeois art sensibilities.
ArtStory: Marcel Duchamp
Francis Picabia
Francis Picabia
Francis Picabia
Francis Picabia was a French artist who worked in Dada, Surrealist, and abstract modes, often employing language and mechanical imagery. He published the Dada journal 391 in Barcelona and America.
ArtStory: Francis Picabia
Man Ray
Man Ray
Man Ray
Man Ray was an American artist in Paris whose photograms, objects, drawings, and other works played an important role in Dada, Surrealism, modern photography, and avant-garde art at large.
ArtStory: Man Ray
Alfred Stieglitz
Alfred Stieglitz
Alfred Stieglitz
Alfred Stieglitz was an American photographer who published the pioneering journal Camera Work. His gallery 291 was a locus for modern artists in America.
ArtStory: Alfred Stieglitz
Kurt Schwitters
Kurt Schwitters
Kurt Schwitters
Kurt Schwitters was a German multi-media artist who was particularly influential in the development of the Dada and Constructivist movements. By the 1920s, Schwitters was heavily involved in the international avant-garde, touring the world with artists like Hans Arp and Tristan Tzara. These travels earned him wide acclaim in the U.S. and scrutiny in his native Germany, which would soon come under the control of the Third Reich.
Kurt Schwitters
Neo-Dada
Neo-Dada
Neo-Dada
Neo-Dada refers to works of art from the 1950s that employ popular imagery and modern materials, often resulting in something absurd. Neo-Dada is both a continuation of the earlier Dada movement and an important precursor to Pop art. Some important Neo-Dada artists include Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Robert Morris and Allan Kaprow.
ArtStory: Neo-Dada
Conceptual Art
Conceptual Art
Conceptual Art
Conceptual art describes an influential movement that first emerged in the mid-1960s and prized ideas over the formal or visual components of traditional works of art. The artists often challenged old concepts such as beauty and quality; they also questioned the conventional means by which the public consumed art; and they rejected the conventional art object in favor of diverse mediums, ranging from maps and diagrams to texts and videos.
ArtStory: Conceptual Art
Pop Art
Pop Art
Pop Art
British artists of the 1950s were the first to make popular culture the dominant subject of their art, and this idea became an international phenomenon in the 1960s. But the Pop art movement is most associated with New York, and artists such as Andy Warhol, who broke with the private concerns of the Abstract Expressionists, and turned to themes which touched on public life and mass society.
ArtStory: Pop Art
Fluxus
Fluxus
Fluxus
Fluxus was an international network of artists of the 1960s who worked in fields ranging from music to performance to the visual arts. Taking their name from the Latin 'to flow,' Fluxus artists adopted an often anarchic and satirical approach to conventional forms of art, and their ideas paved the way for Conceptual art.
ArtStory: Fluxus
Situationist International
Situationist International
Situationist International
Situationist International was agroup of social revolutionaries founded in 1957 whose members were avant-garde artists, intellectuals, and political theorists. This organization was influenced by Marxism, Dada, and Surrealism; its primary goal was to act as a critique on capitalism.
Situationist International
Performance Art
Performance Art
Performance Art
Performance is a genre in which art is presented "live," usually by the artist but sometimes with collaborators or performers. It has had a role in avant-garde art throughout the twentieth century, playing an important part in anarchic movements such as Futurism and Dada. It particularly flourished in the 1960s, when Performance artists became preoccupied with the body, but it continues to be an important aspect of art practice.
ArtStory: Performance Art
Feminist Art
Feminist Art
Feminist Art
Feminist art emerged in the 1960s and '70s to explore questions of sex, power, the body, and the ways in which gender categories structure how we see and understand the world. Developing at the same time as many new media strategies, feminist art frequently involves text, installation, and performance elements.
ArtStory: Feminist Art
Minimalism
Minimalism
Minimalism
Minimalism emerged as a movement in New York in the 1960s, its leading figures creating objects which blurred the boundaries between painting and sculpture, and were characterized by unitary, geometric forms and industrial materials. Emphasizing cool anonymity over the passionate expression of the previous generation of painters, the Minimalists attempted to avoid metaphorical associations, symbolism, and suggestions of spiritual transcendence.
ArtStory: Minimalism