Dada, Surrealism, and SuprematismAKA Dada and some more Isms Rebekah Scoggins Art Appreciation April 9, 2013
Dada • Began as protest against the horrors of WWI • Artists and writers were from Zurich, Switzerland; • Name Dada was an ambiguous word that they chose by plunging a knife into the dictionary, became a collective rallying cry. • More rebellious attitude than a cohesive style, though all artists worked in tandem but look different • In the eyes of the Dadaists, the destructive absurdity of war was caused by the traditional values; they set out to overturn them • War showed them that European culture had lost its way • Rejected most moral, social, political, and aesthetic values • Thought it pointless to try to find order & meaning in world where so called rational behavior had produced chaos & destruction. • Aimed to shock viewers into seeing the absurdity of the Western world’s social & political situation • All about play & spontaneity; based works on chance rather than premeditation
Jean Arp, Untitled (Collage with Squares Arranged According to the Laws of Chance). 1916-1917. Dada.
Marcel Duchamp, Fountain, 1917, Dada. Marcel Duchamp, The Bicycle Wheel. 1913. Dada.
Hannah Höch, Cut with the Kitchen Knife Dada Through the Last Weimar Beer-Belly Cultural Epoch of Germany, 1919-1920. Dada.
Surrealism • In 1920s, this group of writers & painters gathered to protest the direction of European culture • Thought that modern emphasis on science, rationality, and progress was throwing the consciousness of Europeans out of balance. • In response, they proclaimed the importance of the unconscious mind, of dreams, fantasies, and hallucinations. • Indebted to the irrationality of Dada, they also drew heavily on the new psychology of Sigmund Freud. • Officially launched in 1924 in Paris with the publication of its first manifesto.
Max Ernst. Two Children Are Threatened by a Nightingale. 1924. Surrealism.
Kazimir Malevich. Suprematist Composition: Airplane Flying. 1915. Suprematism.