Art In the Interwar Period

Art In the Interwar Period
Dada and Surrealism
-When was it popular?
>Toward the end and immediately after WWI
-What does Dada mean?
>No one is sure, one possible explanation is that Dada
is French for Hobby Horse, Dada may also come from
Romanian where it translates into, “yeah, yeah”
-What genres did Dada encompass?
>Dada was mostly a movement in the visual arts
(painting, sculpture) but it also included poetry,
essays, music, and plays
-What characteristics make something Dada?
>Dada was a reaction against the status quo of
European society—rationality, respectability,
conformity, etc. which the Dada-ists blamed for
causing the tragedy of WWI
Examples of Dada Visual Art
-Things to look for:
>Randomness-no discernable subject matter
>Statements about the subjectivity of artDada artists thought anything could be art,
including ordinary objects that people
encountered in their daily lives
>Incomprehensibility-sometimes the message
is that there is no message
Hannah Hoch: Cut With the Dada Kitchen Knife
Through the Last Weimar Beer Belly Cultural Epoch in
Jean Arp: Untitled (Collage With Squares Arranged According to the
Laws of Chance)
Raoul Haussmann: ABCD
Marcel Duchamp: Fountain and Bicycle
Marcel Duchamp: L.H.O.O.Q.
Dada Poetry
-Usually had no meaning, or no obvious
meaning, consisted of words or sounds that
sounded interesting to the ear, but might not
mean anything
Examples of Dada Poetry
Hugo Ballgadji beri bimba
glandridi lauli lonni cadori
-When was Surrealism popular?
>In the years after WWI until the present day 1920today, although the height of Surrealism was the 1920’s
and 30’s
-What is/was the philosophy of the Surrealists?
>The Surrealists believed in the power of the
unconscious over a person in their daily life. Past
experiences that you might not remember or even be
aware of stayed in your mind and influenced the kind
of person you were. Surrealist art reflected this
philosophy by portraying strange dream-like images
that juxtaposed familiar objects in unfamiliar illogical
Salvador Dali: The Persistence of
Max Ernst: Elephant Celebes
Andre Masson: Automatic Drawing
Yves Tanguy: Indefinite Divisibility
Renee Magritte: The Treachery of
Grigori De Chirico: Love Song
-The art of the interwar period was heavily
influenced by the experiences of WWI
>the Dada-ists were so disillusioned by the
war that they rejected all previous standards
for art
>the surrealists attempted to explain the
unexplainable tragedy of the war by looking at
the subconscious
-The art of the interwar period also reflected the
general uncertainty of the period

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