Thursday, October 21, 2010

George Grosz: "Degenerate Art"

"Fit For Active Service" (1918)

Along with Otto Dix, George Grosz was a key proponent of the New Objectivity in German art.

From the Figge Art Museum website:
World War I instilled in Grosz a hatred of the Prussian military establishment, which he attacked mercilessly in his work. The most well known of his satirical drawings is "Fit for Active Service," in which a fat, complacent doctor pronounces a skeleton fit for duty. His disgust with his countrymen caused him to anglicize his name (adding an 'e' to Georg) in 1917. Immediately after the war, Grosz became a leader in the German Dada movement, which brought him much success and international recognition. His work in the 1920s and 1930s ruthlessly denounced a decaying German society and his despair of the political situation in Germany. His relentless political views resulted in several prosecutions for obscenity and blasphemy, the confiscation of his drawings, and his inclusion in Hitler's Entarte Kunst (degenerate art) exhibition in 1937 in Munich. In 1933, Grosz came to the U.S. to take up a teaching post at the Art Students League in New York. He taught there until 1955. In later years, Grosz painted romantic landscapes and still-lifes attempting to overcome his reputation as a brilliant satirist. He died shortly after his return to Germany in 1959.
"Lovesick" (1916)

"Beauty, Thee Will I Praise" (1919)

"Grey Day" (1921)

"The Pillars of Society" (1926)

"The Agitator" (1928)

1 comment:

  1. Browsing the Net looking for a present for my wife for our wedding anniversary (which I nearly forgot), I came by chance upon this fantastic site called, based probably in Paris. Talk about the Louvre having a big collection of priceless masterpieces, this site has just about everything in Western art, but as digital files.
    What they do is to make good reproduction prints from your choice of work from their archive. I know that the prints are good because I ordered online, a print that was on canvas, like a painting. I specified the size and even chose a frame at their site.
    A bit awkward when the gift was delivered early to my door, luckily while my wife was not home. What did I choose? This glorious nude by the German artist George Grosz: and it's hanging gloriously large above our bed head now. Risqué? Sure. But my wife and I love it.