Defining Characteristic Of Berlin Dada ; A Vital Interwar Period Movement

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Photomontage is a defining characteristic of Berlin Dada; a vital interwar period movement, which primarily took place between 1915 and 1924. Although photomontage is associated with the interwar period, it undoubtedly had a monumental influence on the fine arts well after it’s initial collective disbanded, which included figures such as John Heartfield, Hannah Hoch, George Grosz, Kurt Schwitters, and Raoul Hausmann. In fact, even celebrated post-war and contemporary artists, such as David Hockney, Jerry Uelsmann, and Robert Rauschenberg, continued to express themselves through this specific medium of cut and paste photography and print clippings. That being said, as early as the late 1920s, as is true for many emerging forms of expression…show more content…
Hausmann’s essay has since been published in many important publications, mostly notably the Weimar Republic Sourcebook, p. 651-653; an English language text which compiles the, arguably, most important essays of Weimar era Germany. Other publications include Photography of the Modern Era, p. 178-180, where it was first translated into English by Joel Agee, and Dadas on Art: Tzara, Arp, Duchamp, and Others. In his succinct argument, Raoul discusses the potential longevity of photomontage as an important medium for not only its initial political and propagandistic purposes but also as having future use case in psychology, sociology, and even optics. Not only is this argument sparked by the opinion, (although these opinionated critics are never directly named), that photomontage did not have future potential but, importantly, that it had also become too commercial for the avant-garde. Photomontage had begun to gain primary popularity in advertising, used for popular film and even fashion. This widespread use in advertising simplified the respected method and initial motivations for the medium, supposedly diluting critical high art appreciation. Hausmann also touches upon the new critical obsession with the New Objectivity movement in Germany. Is there room for new movements to exist parallel to former expressions, allowing them to both advance or is the latter doomed to only exist as an illustration of a particular historical lens?
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