George Grosz (German: [ɡʁoːs]; born Georg Ehrenfried Groß; July 26, 1893 – July 6, 1959) was a German artist known especially for his caricatural drawings and paintings of Berlin life in the 1920s. He was a prominent member of the Berlin Dada and New Objectivity group during the Weimar Republic. He immigrated to the United States in 1933, and became a naturalized citizen in 1938. Abandoning the style and subject matter of his earlier work, he exhibited regularly and taught for many years at the Art Students League of New York. In 1959 he returned to Berlin where he died.
George Grosz in 1921
Georg Ehrenfried Groß
July 26, 1893
|Died||July 6, 1959 (aged 65)|
|Nationality||German, American (after 1938)|
|Known for||Painting, drawing|
|The Funeral (Dedicated to Oscar Panizza)|
|Movement||Dada, New Objectivity|
Grosz was born Georg Ehrenfried Groß in Berlin, Germany, the son of a pub owner. His parents were devoutly Lutheran. Grosz grew up in the Pomeranian town of Stolp (now Słupsk, Poland), where his mother became the keeper of the local Hussars Officers' mess after his father died in 1901. At the urging of his cousin, the young Grosz began attending a weekly drawing class taught by a local painter named Grot. Grosz developed his skills further by drawing meticulous copies of the drinking scenes of Eduard von Grützner, and by drawing imaginary battle scenes. From 1909 to 1911, he studied at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts, where his teachers were Richard Müller, Robert Sterl, Raphael Wehle, and Osmar Schindler. He subsequently studied at the Berlin College of Arts and Crafts under Emil Orlik.
In November 1914 Grosz volunteered for military service, in the hope that by thus preempting conscription he would avoid being sent to the front. He was given a discharge after hospitalization for sinusitis in 1915. In 1916 he changed the spelling of his name to "de-Germanise" and internationalise his name – thus Georg became "George" (an English spelling), while in his surname he replaced the German "ß" with its phonetic equivalent "sz". He did this as a protest against German nationalism and out of a romantic enthusiasm for America – a legacy of his early reading of the books of James Fenimore Cooper, Bret Harte and Karl May – that he retained for the rest of his life. His artist friend and collaborator Helmut Herzfeld likewise changed his name to John Heartfield at the same time.
In January 1917 Grosz was drafted for service, but in May he was discharged as permanently unfit.
In the last months of 1918, Grosz joined the Spartacist League, which was renamed the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) in December 1918. He was arrested during the Spartakus uprising in January 1919, but escaped using fake identification documents. In 1921 Grosz was accused of insulting the army, which resulted in a 300 German Mark fine and the destruction of the collection Gott mit uns ("God with us"), a satire on German society. In 1928 he was prosecuted for blasphemy after publishing anticlerical drawings, such as one depicting prisoners under assault from a minister who vomits grenades and weapons onto them, and another showing Christ coerced into military service. According to historian David Nash, Grosz "publicly stated that he was neither Christian nor pacifist, but was actively motivated by an inner need to create these pictures", and was finally acquitted after two appeals. By contrast, in 1942 Time magazine identified Grosz as a pacifist.
In 1922 Grosz traveled to Russia with the writer Martin Andersen Nexø. Upon their arrival in Murmansk they were briefly arrested as spies; after their credentials were approved they were allowed to meet with Grigory Zinoviev, Anatoly Lunacharsky, and Vladimir Lenin. Grosz's six-month stay in the Soviet Union left him unimpressed by what he had seen. He ended his membership in the KPD in 1923, although his political positions were little changed.
Bitterly anti-Nazi, Grosz left Germany shortly before Hitler came to power. In June 1932, he accepted an invitation to teach the summer semester at the Art Students League of New York. In October 1932, Grosz returned to Germany, but on January 12, 1933, he and his family emigrated to the United States. Grosz became a naturalized citizen of the U.S. in 1938, and made his home in Bayside, New York. In the 1930s he taught at the Art Students League, where one of his students was Romare Bearden, who was influenced by his style of collage. He taught at the Art Students League intermittently until 1955.
In America, Grosz determined to make a clean break with his past, and changed his style and subject matter. He continued to exhibit regularly, and in 1946 he published his autobiography, A Little Yes and a Big No. In the 1950s he opened a private art school at his home and also worked as Artist in Residence at the Des Moines Art Center. Grosz was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate Academician in 1950. In 1954 he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Though he had U.S. citizenship, he resolved to return to Berlin, and relocated there in May 1959. He died there on July 6, 1959, from the effects of falling down a flight of stairs after a night of drinking.
Although Grosz made his first oil paintings in 1912 while still a student, his earliest oils that can be identified today date from 1916. By 1914, Grosz worked in a style influenced by Expressionism and Futurism, as well as by popular illustration, graffiti, and children's drawings. Sharply outlined forms are often treated as if transparent. The City (1916–17) was the first of his many paintings of the modern urban scene. Other examples include the apocalyptic Explosion (1917), Metropolis (1917), and The Funeral, a 1918 painting depicting a mad funeral procession. He settled in Berlin in 1918 and was a founder of the Berlin Dada movement, using his satirical drawings to attack bourgeois supporters of the Weimar Republic.
In his drawings, usually in pen and ink which he sometimes developed further with watercolor, Grosz did much to create the image most have of Berlin and the Weimar Republic in the 1920s. Corpulent businessmen, wounded soldiers, prostitutes, sex crimes and orgies were his great subjects (for example, see Fit for Active Service). His draftsmanship was excellent although the works for which he is best known adopt a deliberately crude form of caricature in the style of Jugend. His oeuvre includes a few absurdist works, such as Remember Uncle August the Unhappy Inventor which has buttons sewn on it, and also includes a number of erotic artworks.
After his emigration to the USA in 1933, Grosz "sharply rejected [his] previous work, and caricature in general." In place of his earlier corrosive vision of the city, he now painted conventional nudes and many landscape watercolors. More acerbic works, such as Cain, or Hitler in Hell (1944), were the exception. In his autobiography, he wrote: "A great deal that had become frozen within me in Germany melted here in America and I rediscovered my old yearning for painting. I carefully and deliberately destroyed a part of my past." Although a softening of his style had been apparent since the late 1920s, Grosz's work assumed a more sentimental tone in America, a change generally seen as a decline. His late work never achieved the critical success of his Berlin years.
From 1947 to 1959, George Grosz lived in Huntington, New York, where he taught painting at the Huntington Township Art League. It is said by locals that he used what was to become his most famous painting, Eclipse of the Sun, to pay for a car repair bill, in his relative penury. The painting was later acquired by house painter Tom Constantine to settle a debt of $104.00. The Heckscher Museum of Art in Huntington purchased the painting in 1968 for $15,000.00, raising the money by public subscription. As Eclipse of the Sun portrays the warmongering of arms manufacturers, this painting became a destination of protesters of the Viet Nam War in Heckscher Park (where the museum is sited) in the late 1960s and early 70s.
In 2006, the Heckscher proposed selling Eclipse of the Sun at its then-current appraisal of approximately $19,000,000.00 to pay for repairs and renovations to the building. There was such public outcry that the museum decided not to sell, and announced plans to create a dedicated space for display of the painting in the renovated museum.
Grosz's art influenced other New Objectivity artists such as Heinrich Maria Davringhausen, Anton Räderscheidt, and Georg Scholz. In the United States, the artists influenced by his work included the social realists Ben Shahn and William Gropper.
In 1960, Grosz was the subject of the Oscar-nominated short film George Grosz' Interregnum. He is fictionalized as "Fritz Falke" in Arthur R.G. Solmssen's novel A Princess in Berlin (1980). In 2002, actor Kevin McKidd portrayed Grosz in a supporting role as an eager artist seeking exposure in Max, regarding Adolf Hitler's youth.
The Grosz estate filed a lawsuit in 1995 against the Manhattan art dealer Serge Sabarsky, arguing that Sabarsky had deprived the estate of appropriate compensation for the sale of hundreds of Grosz works he had acquired. In the suit, filed in State Supreme Court in Manhattan, the Grosz estate claims that Sabarsky secretly acquired 440 Grosz works for himself, primarily drawings and watercolors produced in Germany in the 1910s and 20s. The lawsuit was settled in summer in 2006.
In 2003 the Grosz family initiated a legal battle against the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, asking that three paintings be returned. According to documents, the paintings were sold to the Nazis after Grosz fled the country in 1933. The museum never settled the claim, arguing that a three-year statute of limitations in bringing such a claim had expired. It is well documented that the Nazis stole thousands of paintings during World War II and many heirs of German painters continue to fight powerful museums to reclaim such works.
George Grosz's younger son is jazz guitarist Marty Grosz.
Altina Schinasi (August 4, 1907 – August 19, 1999) was an American sculptor, filmmaker, entrepreneur, window dresser, designer and inventor. She was best known for designing the Harlequin eyeglass frame.Carl Einstein
Carl Einstein (26 April 1885 – 5 July 1940), born Karl Einstein, was an influential German Jewish writer, art historian, anarchist and critic.
Regarded as one of the first critics to appreciate the development of Cubism, as well as for his work on African art and influence on the European avant-garde, Einstein was a friend and colleague of such figures as George Grosz, Georges Braque, Pablo Picasso and Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler. His work combined many strands of both political and aesthetic discourse into his writings, addressing both the developing aesthetic of modern art and the political situation in Europe.
Einstein's involvement in social and political life was characterized by communist sympathies and anarchist views. A target of the German right wing during the interwar Weimar period, Einstein left Germany for France in 1928, a half-decade ahead of the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, later taking part in the Spanish Civil War on the side of the anti-Francisco Franco anarcho-syndicalists during the 1930s.
Trapped in southern France following Nazi Germany's defeat of the French Third Republic, Einstein took his own life by jumping from a bridge on 5 July 1940.Charles Carey
Charles Carey may refer to:
Charles F. Carey, Jr. (died 1945), United States Army soldier and Medal of Honor recipient
Charles James Carey (1838–1891), Royal Navy officer
Charles Carey (producer), Oscar-nominated producer of the 1960 documentary George Grosz' InterregnumDada
Dada () or Dadaism was an art movement of the European avant-garde in the early 20th century, with early centers in Zürich, Switzerland, at the Cabaret Voltaire (circa 1916); New York Dada began circa 1915, and after 1920 Dada flourished in Paris. Developed in reaction to World War I, the Dada movement consisted of artists who rejected the logic, reason, and aestheticism of modern capitalist society, instead expressing nonsense, irrationality, and anti-bourgeois protest in their works. The art of the movement spanned visual, literary, and sound media, including collage, sound poetry, cut-up writing, and sculpture. Dadaist artists expressed their discontent with violence, war, and nationalism, and maintained political affinities with the radical far-left.
There is no consensus on the origin of the movement's name; a common story is that the German artist Richard Huelsenbeck slid a paper knife (letter-opener) at random into a dictionary, where it landed on "dada", a colloquial French term for a hobby horse. Others note that it suggests the first words of a child, evoking a childishness and absurdity that appealed to the group. Still others speculate that the word might have been chosen to evoke a similar meaning (or no meaning at all) in any language, reflecting the movement's internationalism.The roots of Dada lie in pre-war avant-garde. The term anti-art, a precursor to Dada, was coined by Marcel Duchamp around 1913 to characterize works which challenge accepted definitions of art. Cubism and the development of collage and abstract art would inform the movement's detachment from the constraints of reality and convention. The work of French poets, Italian Futurists and the German Expressionists would influence Dada's rejection of the tight correlation between words and meaning. Works such as Ubu Roi (1896) by Alfred Jarry, and the ballet Parade (1916–17) by Erik Satie would also be characterized as proto-Dadaist works. The Dada movement's principles were first collected in Hugo Ball's Dada Manifesto in 1916.
The Dadaist movement included public gatherings, demonstrations, and publication of art/literary journals; passionate coverage of art, politics, and culture were topics often discussed in a variety of media. Key figures in the movement included Hugo Ball, Marcel Duchamp, Emmy Hennings, Hans Arp, Sophie Taeuber-Arp, Raoul Hausmann, Hannah Höch, Johannes Baader, Tristan Tzara, Francis Picabia, Huelsenbeck, George Grosz, John Heartfield, Man Ray, Beatrice Wood, Kurt Schwitters, Hans Richter, Max Ernst, and Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven among others. The movement influenced later styles like the avant-garde and downtown music movements, and groups including Surrealism, nouveau réalisme, pop art and Fluxus.Dav (journal)
Dav was a leftist journal published between 1924 and 1937 with intervals in Prague and then in Bratislava. The journal featured illustrations by Frans Masereel, George Grosz, Chagall and others. It had a Marxist stance. A reprint edition came out in 1965.Edie Parker
Edie Kerouac-Parker (1922–1993) was the author of the memoir You'll Be Okay, about her life with her first husband, Jack Kerouac, and the early days of the Beat Generation. While an art student under George Grosz at Columbia University, she and Barnard student and friend Joan Vollmer shared an apartment on 118th Street in New York City which came to be frequented by many of the then unknown Beats, among them Vollmer's eventual husband William S. Burroughs, and fellow Columbia students Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg as well as Lucien Carr.Born in Detroit, Parker was raised in Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan. Edie and Jack were married on August 22, 1944 at Manhattan Municipal Building in downtown New York. At the time, Jack was in jail as an accessory after the fact in Lucien Carr's murder of David Kammerer. This event expedited their intention to marry as Jack's father, Leo, refused to bail him out of jail. Jack was released from jail long enough for him and Edie to be escorted downtown by two N.Y.P.D detectives to be married. Once married, Edie could access an inheritance from her grandfather's then-unprobated estate to post Kerouac's bail. The marriage was annulled in 1952.Edie appears as Judie Smith in Kerouac's novel The Town and the City, Elly in "Visions of Cody", Edna "Johnnie" Palmer of "Vanity of Duluoz", and herself in "The Original Scroll" – the unedited edition of On the Road. Edie was played by actress Elizabeth Olsen in the film Kill Your Darlings. Edie's memoir, You'll Be Okay – My Life with Jack Kerouac, was published posthumously in 2007 by City Lights.Fit for Active Service
Fit for Active Service (also known as The Faith Healers) is a drawing by 20th-century German artist George Grosz, created between 1916 and 1917. It is considered a seminal part of the post-World War I movement, Neue Sachlichkeit, or New Objectivity. The medium is pen, brush, and ink on paper.George Grosz' Interregnum
George Grosz' Interregnum is a 29-minute-long documentary film about the artist George Grosz produced by Altina Carey and Charles Carey, and narrated by Lotte Lenya. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short. The original music was by Paul Glass, and the cinematography by Terry Sanders. The film was released on video as "Germany Between The Wars." The Academy Film Archive preserved Interregnum in 2013.Grosz
Grosz may refer to:
Grosz, a coin valued as a hundredth of a Polish złoty, the standard currency denomination
Kraków grosz, 14th-century coins of Kraków
Groschen, a coin used in various statesGrosz or Grósz is the surname of:
Barbara J. Grosz, an American artificial intelligence pioneer
Elizabeth Grosz, a feminist theorist.
George Grosz, a German artist in the Dada and New Objectivist movements.
George Grosz' Interregnum, a 29-minute-long documentary film about the artist George Grosz
Hans Grosz, an Austrian criminal jurist and an examining magistrate
Károly Grósz, a Hungarian communist politician
Peter Grosz, actor/producer
Stephen Grosz a Britain author and psychoanalyst.
Wilhelm Grosz, an Austrian composer, pianist and conductorHofstra University Museum
Hofstra University Museum is the art museum of Hofstra University, located in Hempstead, New York in Long Island.
The Museum has two galleries on campus: the Emily Lowe Gallery and the David Filderman Gallery. The Museum and the Emily Lowe Gallery were established in 1963, and have been an active presence in the University for more than 50 years. The David Filderman Gallery was added to the museum in 1991. The Hofstra University Museum is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM).The Hofstra University Museum holds a collection of more than 5,000 art and ethnographic objects dating from 1,500 BCE to the contemporary period and representing six continents. The collections have grown primarily through gifts since the founding of Hofstra University in 1935, prior to the establishment of the Museum, and there have been many local contributors to the Museum’s collections. The Museum is noteworthy for African art and objects; Asian art is another area of strength with works dating from the seventh to the twentieth century.
The Hofstra University Museum owns an early Gauguin oil painting, Portrait of a Woman (1881–82), works by George Grosz, Conrad Felixmüller, Johan Barthold Jongkind, John Thomas Peele, Georges Rouault, Joseph Stella, Jane Peterson, and Alfred Maurer. Photographs in the collection include works of Berenice Abbott, Lucien Clergue, Danny Lyon, August Sander, Andy Warhol, and Edward Weston.Jedermann sein eigner Fussball
Jedermann sein eigner Fussball ("Everyman His Own Football") was an illustrated bimonthly magazine published by Malik Verlag (Wieland Herzfelde's publishing house). The satirical periodical in tabloid format was published on 15 February 1919, and confiscated immediately on publication by the police. It included two photomontages by John Heartfield on the front cover and six line drawings by George Grosz. Texts by Herzfelde, Walter Mehring, Mynona; other contributors jointly credited include Richard Huelsenbeck, Erwin Piscator, Karl Nierendorf, and J.H. Kuhlemann. The cover's typeface and layout used satirise contemporary trends in conservative German newspaper design.
The issue contains photomontages such as Heartfield’s "Wer ist der Schönste? (who is the most beautiful?)," a proposed beauty contest of government leaders whose faces are playfully spread across an open fan. In spite of its absurdist amusements, this singular issue was a work of impassioned radical opinion, published only a few weeks after the communist revolt in Berlin had been quashed by Gustav Noske's Free Corps, and Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg executed. "Jedermann sein eigner Fussball" is an example of Berlin Dada in its most aggravated political phase.Marty Grosz
Martin Oliver Grosz (born February 28, 1930) is an American jazz guitarist, banjoist, vocalist, and composer born in Berlin, Germany. He performed with Bob Wilber and wrote arrangements for him. He has also worked with Kenny Davern, Dick Sudhalter, and Keith Ingham. During the 1970s, he was a member of Soprano Summit.
In 1986 Grosz joined the Classic Jazz Quartet with Dick Wellstood, Joe Muranyi, and Dick Sudhalter. He played, sang, and wrote most of the group's arrangements. He has also performed at concerts with Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, and Charlie Byrd.Marty Grosz is the son of noted German-American artist George Grosz. Husband of Rachel Grosz.
Father of Rowlandson G Grosz, and Tobias GroszNeo-expressionism
Neo-expressionism is a style of late modernist or early-postmodern painting and sculpture that emerged in the late 1970s. Neo-expressionists were sometimes called Transavantgarde, Junge Wilde or Neue Wilden ('The new wild ones'; 'New Fauves' would better meet the meaning of the term). It is characterized by intense subjectivity and rough handling of materials.Neo-expressionism developed as a reaction against conceptual art and minimal art of the 1970s. Neo-expressionists returned to portraying recognizable objects, such as the human body (although sometimes in an abstract manner), in a rough and violently emotional way, often using vivid colors. It was overtly inspired by German Expressionist painters, such as Emil Nolde, Max Beckmann, George Grosz, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, James Ensor and Edvard Munch. It is also related to American Lyrical Abstraction painting of the 1960s and 1970s, The Hairy Who movement in Chicago, the Bay Area Figurative School of the 1950s and 1960s, the continuation of Abstract Expressionism, New Image Painting and precedents in Pop Painting.Neues Schauspielhaus
The Neues Schauspielhaus (English: New Theatre) at 5 Nollendorfplatz in the Schöneberg district of Berlin was built in 1905 as a theatre and concert hall (the Mozartsaal) in the then-fashionable Art Nouveau style. In 1911 the Mozartsaal was converted into a cinema with 925 seats.From the beginning of World War I the theatre turned into an operetta stage until in 1927, Erwin Piscator and Tilla Durieux opened their Theater am Nollendorfplatz in the building. Piscator created critical performances by playwrights like Ernst Toller and Walter Mehring, with artists like Bertolt Brecht, George Grosz and John Heartfield at times working with him. Piscator's theater went bankrupt in 1929, and he emigrated in 1931. After the Nazi takeover the house became an operetta theatre once again, now under the direction of Harald Paulsen.
While the auditorium was destroyed in World War II, the facade as well as the cinema survived and in 1951 was renamed the Metropol. Since 1977 it has been used as a discothèque and became a famous music club during the 1980s heyday of West Berlin, frequented by bands like Depeche Mode, Morrissey, The Cross, The Human League and Front 242. For a short time in 2000 it was the location of the KitKatClub and in 2005 the architect Hans Kollhoff remodeled the interior as the Goya night club.New Objectivity
The New Objectivity (in German: Neue Sachlichkeit) was a movement in German art that arose during the 1920s as a reaction against expressionism. The term was coined by Gustav Friedrich Hartlaub, the director of the Kunsthalle in Mannheim, who used it as the title of an art exhibition staged in 1925 to showcase artists who were working in a post-expressionist spirit.
As these artists—who included Max Beckmann, Otto Dix, George Grosz, Christian Schad, and Jeanne Mammen—rejected the self-involvement and romantic longings of the expressionists, Weimar intellectuals in general made a call to arms for public collaboration, engagement, and rejection of romantic idealism.
Although principally describing a tendency in German painting, the term took a life of its own and came to characterize the attitude of public life in Weimar Germany as well as the art, literature, music, and architecture created to adapt to it. Rather than some goal of philosophical objectivity, it was meant to imply a turn towards practical engagement with the world—an all-business attitude, understood by Germans as intrinsically American.The movement essentially ended in 1933 with the fall of the Weimar Republic and the rise of the Nazis to power.Otto Dix
Wilhelm Heinrich Otto Dix (German: [ˈvɪlhɛlm ˈhaɪnʁiç ˈɔto ˈdɪks]; 2 December 1891 – 25 July 1969) was a German painter and printmaker, noted for his ruthless and harshly realistic depictions of German society during the Weimar Republic and the brutality of war. Along with George Grosz, he is widely considered one of the most important artists of the Neue Sachlichkeit.Photomontage
Photomontage is the process and the result of making a composite photograph by cutting, gluing, rearranging and overlapping two or more photographs into a new image. Sometimes the resulting composite image is photographed so that a final image may appear as a seamless photographic print. A similar method, although one that does not use film, is realized today through image-editing software. This latter technique is referred to by professionals as "compositing", and in casual usage is often called "photoshopping" (from the name of the popular software system). A composite of related photographs to extend a view of a single scene or subject would not be labeled as a montage.Quentin Fiore
Quentin Fiore (born 1920) is a graphic designer, who has worked mostly in books.
Fiore is essentially a self-taught designer. His visual education came from a short period of painting and drawing classes in New York in the late 1930s with George Grosz and, later, Hans Hoffmann. Fiore later studied at the "New Bauhaus" in Chicago.University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art
The University of Northern Iowa Gallery of Art is an art gallery at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, housed in the Kamerick Art Building on West 27th Street.
The permanent collection of the gallery includes works by Berenice Abbott, Josef Albers, Eugène Atget, Romare Bearden, John Buck, Harold Eugene Edgerton, George Grosz, Philip Guston, R. B. Kitaj, Pablo Picasso, and Jerry Uelsmann. The current director is Darrell Taylor. The gallery hosts a rotating series of lectures and exhibitions.