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War Languages Women and war in the art of Käthe Kollwitz. Vesa Matteo Piludu. University of Helsinki Department of Art Research. Millet Gleaners 1857 . Angelus. Shepherdess with Her Flock 1864. Title The Weeders Date 1868 . Song of the Lark, 1884. Woman Sewing by Lamplight 1870.

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war languages women and war in the art of k the kollwitz

War LanguagesWomen and war in the art ofKäthe Kollwitz

Vesa Matteo Piludu

University of Helsinki

Department of Art Research

  • Degas’ penetrating observation, captured subtle differences in people’s faces and body language (especially within different economic classes).
  • Degas respected the hard-working immigrants from Eastern Europe, especially working women.
woman ironing edgar degas c 1890
Woman ironing', Edgar Degas, c.1890
  • The art of Degas was that of a 'Naturalist', depicting what was considered “vulgar”
  • laundresses were commonly thought of as borderline prostitutes - in a way that was almost scientific
k the kollwitz farmers war
Käthe Kollwitz - Farmers' war
  • Much of the art of modern social protest traces its roots to the work of German artist Käthe Kollwitz.
  • One of a cycle of prints and drawings which the youthful Kollwitz produced on the theme of peasant revolt
  • The cycle hearkened back to the Bauernkrieg (literally, "farmers' war") of the sixteenth century while portraying the dire straits of agricultural laborers in contemporary Germany.
k the kollwitz ploughers etching and aquatint 1906
Käthe Kollwitz Ploughers, etching and aquatint, 1906
  • The Plougher of her Peasant War series symbolises the oppressed of every age. Not the man behind the plough, but reduced to pulling it himself, he is a virtual beast of burden
k the kollwitz german 1867 1945 tod in wasser death in the water
Käthe Kollwitz (German, 1867-1945), Tod in Wasser / Death in the water
  • this lithograph, produced shortly after Hitler assumed power, shows a drowned family, perhaps a prophetic vision of Germany's future as a country about to be drowning in death
KATHE KOLLWITZ 1867 - 1945Woman in the Lap of Death (Tod mit Frau im Schoss)Woodcut on ivory wove paper, 1921
rosa luxemburg
Rosa Luxemburg
  • Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg were among the founders of the Berlin Spartakusbund (Spartacus League)
  • On January 15, 1919, Liebknecht and Luxemburg were shot to death during the Spartacus Revolt on the pretext that they were attempting escape.
  • In this instance Kollwitz emphasizes grief and the human element over any explicit political reference
lmost whetted by k the kollwitz
lmost whetted by Käthe Kollwitz
  • No wonder the resentment of Kollwitz's peasant woman is also sharpened as she whets her scythe-in an etching significantly titled Almost whetted
Käthe Kollwitz (German, 1867-1945)Weberzug [March of the Weavers], fourth plate in Ein Weberaustand [Revolt of the Weavers], 1897
The survivors say: War to War!

The text on the right side says: Do not teach the children to glorify the war and war hero's; teach them to despise war

The Survivors, a drawing by the German artist Kathe Kollwitz, was used for a peace congress in The Hague, Holland, in 1922.