The Influence Of Dada Before Dada

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Dada was a creative movement that emerged as a responsive protest to the barbarity of World War I. A reaction to the horrors of humanity that were on display at war, followers of the movement strongly believed in a form of ‘anti-art’ that ridiculed the established art institutions. Two established artists of this time were Marcel Duchamp and Erik Satie, who are often looked at as heavy influences on this style. Their works “L.H.O.O.Q” and “Parade” are strong examples of the disruptive nature of this movement, and how Dada was an extreme rejection of traditional forms of art, often somewhat insulting to traditional arts.
Dada works trace back to 1916 emerging from Hugo Ball’s nightclub in Zurich, Cabaret Voltaire, although there is the recognition of a period referred to “Dada before Dada”. The term’s official meaning is unknown, having multiple translations to either ‘hobbyhorse’, ‘nursemaid’, or simply ‘yes, yes’, this lack of understanding is a true fit for the ideals and archetypes of the artistic movement(Rasula X). Dada is strongly defined through characteristics of contradictions in concepts as well as ‘saying no is still saying something’ (Rasula XI). The works that were produced during this time aimed to defy the standards of art. Richard Huelsenbeck wrote in his book the Dada Almanac, “Dada is forever the enemy of that comfortable sunday art which is supposed to uplift man...dada hurts” (Rasula 65). The movement is one of ultimate nonsense, in which the “true

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