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Article

Arp, Hans  

Greta Stroeh

[Jean] (Peter Wilhelm)

(b Strassburg, Germany [now Strasbourg, France], Sept 16, 1886; d Basle, Switzerland, June 7, 1966).

French sculptor, painter, collagist, printmaker, and poet of German birth. The son of a German father and French Alsatian mother, he developed a cosmopolitan outlook from an early age and as a mature artist maintained close contact with the avant-garde throughout Europe. He was a pioneer of abstract art and one of the founders of Dada in Zurich, but he also participated actively in both Surrealism and Constructivism. While he prefigured junk art and the Fluxus movement in his incorporation of waste material, it was through his investigation of biomorphism and of chance and accident that he proved especially influential on later 20th-century art in liberating unconscious creative forces.

Following a brief period at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Strasbourg (1900–01), Arp received instruction from 1901 from a friend and neighbour, the painter and printmaker Georges Ritleng (1875–1972). He then attended the Kunstschule in Weimar (1904–7) and the Académie Julian in Paris (...

Article

Arp, Hans, Later Jean  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 16 September 1886, in Strasbourg; died 7 June 1966, in Basel.

Collage artist, engraver, sculptor, draughtsman, illustrator, poet.

Dadaism.

Der Moderne Bund, Dadaist groups in Zurich and Cologne, Artistes Radicaux, Das Neue Leben, Paris Surrealist Group, Abstraction-Création.

Hans Arp joined the École des Arts et Métiers in Strasbourg in 1902, at the age of 16. In 1903 he began painting and contributed to a local magazine. In 1904 he made his first trip to Paris. From 1905 to 1907 he studied under Ludwig von Hoffmann at the fine arts academy in Weimar, where he attended modern art exhibitions. He returned to Strasbourg, which his family then left for Weggis, on the edge of the Lac des Quatre Cantons in Switzerland. Between 1908 and 1910 he made a second trip to Paris and worked for a time at the Académie Julian. In Weggis he completed his first Abstract compositions and learned the art of modelling. In 1911 he co-founded the group...

Article

Bailly, Alice  

(b Geneva, Feb 25, 1872; d Lausanne, Jan 1, 1938).

Swiss painter and multimedia artist . From 1890/91 she studied under Hugues Bovy (1841–1903) and Denise Sarkissof at the Ecole d’Art in Geneva. A travel scholarship enabled her to study in Munich for a year. From 1904 until the outbreak of World War I Bailly lived in Paris, where she associated with Cubist artists, including Albert Gleizes, Jean Metzinger, Fernand Léger, Marie Laurencin and Sonia Lewitska (1882–1914). From 1905 to 1926 she exhibited regularly at the Salon d’Automne. From 1906 to 1910 her work was influenced by Fauvism, and from 1910 she became interested in Cubism and Futurism: Equestrian Fantasy with Pink Lady (1913; Zurich, Gal. Strunskaja) is reminiscent of the work of Gino Severini or Franz Marc in its rhythmic movement and planar fragmentation of horses and riders into coloured patterns. Other paintings of this period that are also indebted to these movements include ...

Article

Ben  

Swiss, 20th century, male.

Active from 1949 active in France.

Born 18 July 1935, in Naples, to an Irish mother and a Swiss-French father.

Painter (mixed media), installation artist.

Neo-Dadaism, Fluxus, Conceptual Art, Mail Art.

Ben spent periods in Turkey, Egypt and Greece before settling in Nice in 1949. At the age of 16 he broke off his studies, working in a bookshop and then becoming a second-hand goods dealer. However, Ben never ceased to contemplate the legacy created by Marcel Duchamp and the consequences of the ...

Article

Brecht, George  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 7 March 1926, in Halfway (Oregon); died 5 December 2008, in Cologne.

Painter, sculptor. Multimedia.

Neo-Dadaism, Fluxus.

From 1946 to 1950, George Brecht studied physical sciences at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy & Science, and from 1950 to 1955, he trained as a chemist. He met John Cage in ...

Article

Cage, John  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1912, in Los Angeles; died 1992.

Painter, printmaker.

Neo-Dadaism, Fluxus.

John Cage is best known as an avant-garde composer and musician. As a member of the Fluxus group he took part in many of their happenings and was therefore at the heart of various artistic activities that extended into the visual arts. His introduction of the notion of chance into music coincided with the same approach in painting. He also used painting and print making as a means of expression and in Milan in ...

Article

Citroen, Paul  

Dutch, 20th century, male.

Born 15 December 1896, in Berlin; died 13 March 1983, in Wassenaar (The Hague).

Painter, collage artist, photomontage artist.

Dadaism, Constructivism.

Having studied at a school of painting and fine arts in Berlin, Paul Citroen abandoned painting in 1914 to become a bookseller. In ...

Article

Dine, Jim  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 1935, in Cincinnati.

Painter (gouache), watercolourist, assemblage artist, happenings artist, draughtsman, lithographer, photographer.

Neo-Dadaism, Pop Art.

Jim Dine spent his childhood in his father’s painting and plumbing tool shop. He studied at the University of Cincinnati and then at Ohio University, leaving with a Bachelor of Arts in 1957. He also followed courses at Boston Museum School. In 1958 he settled in New York, participating in the birth of Pop Art and, more especially, Happening Art, participating in avant-garde group exhibitions. However, this allegiance to Pop Art has to be moderated to some extent; even though historically he lived this experience, he always added a somewhat poetic, sentimental nuance and retained an attachment to pictorial problems, something that brought him closer to another artist who found himself isolated during this period: Cy Twombly.

Influenced by Allan Kaprow, he took an interest in the environment, exhibiting in ...

Article

Duchamp, Marcel  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 28 July 1887, in Blainville; died 2 October 1968, in Paris.

Painter (including gouache/mixed media), sculptor, printmaker. Ready-mades.

Dadaism, Surrealism.

Groupe de Puteaux, Société Anonyme, New York Dada.

Marcel Duchamp was one of seven children, four of whom were destined to become artists – Marcel himself, his brothers Gaston and Raymond (who came to be known as Jacques Villon and Duchamp-Villon, respectively), and his sister the painter Suzanne Duchamp, who later married Jean Crotti.

Duchamp started painting at age 15, producing several landscapes inspired by Claude Monet, including Church at Blainville. Between 1904 and 1910, he was taking courses at the Académie Julian in Paris, painting in a variety of styles and contributing cartoons or drawings in the style of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec to periodicals such as Courrier Français and Le Rire. In 1911, he started to attend meetings of the Puteaux group that had formed around his brother Jacques Villon. He spent the summer of ...

Article

Giacometti, Augusto  

Swiss, 20th century, male.

Born 16 August 1877, in Stampa; died 9 July 1947, in Zurich.

Painter, watercolourist, pastellist, mixed media, engraver, draughtsman. Designs for stained glass, designs for mosaics, murals.

Dadaism.

Augusto Giacometti was the younger brother of Giovanni Giacometti and the uncle of Alberto and Diego Giacometti. He has been almost forgotten today, but was well-known at the beginning of the 20th century for the monumental decorations which he was commissioned to produce. He studied at the school of decorative arts in Zurich for three years and then went to study in Paris in 1897, where he took a course at the École des Arts Décoratifs and also studied under Eugène Grasser at the training college for art teachers. He became a teacher at the art college in Florence in 1907. Between 1900 and 1916 he published his research into colour in a work entitled ...

Article

Grooms, Red  

real name Charles Rogers Grooms

American, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1 June 1937, in Nashville (Tennessee).

Painter, sculptor, draughtsman, performance artist, environmental artist, installation artist, filmmaker.

Neo-Dadaism, Pop Art.

Born Charles Rogers Grooms, the red-headed Red Grooms studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (1955), the New School for Social Research in New York (1956), and under Hans Hofmann in Provincetown, Massachusetts (1957). He was one of the first performance artists amongst others such as Allan Kaprow, Claes Oldenburg, Jim Dine, and Robert Whitman. Grooms introduced his ‘happenings’ in New York City as early as 1957, the most famous being The Burning Building at the Delancey Street Museum. Grooms’ style of performance art, non-verbal yet with its theatrical narrative flow and comedic elements, quickly transferred into filmmaking, and he produced Shoot the Moon (1962), after A Trip to the Moon by Georges Méliès....

Article

Grosz, Georg  

German, 20th century, male.

Active and naturalised in the USA 1932–1952.

Born 26 July 1893, in Berlin; died 6 July 1959, in Berlin.

Painter, draughtsman, photomontage artist, collage artist, photographer.

Dadaism, Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity).

Berlin Dadaist, ASSO Group (Association of Revolutionary Figuration Artists).

George Grosz was born of modest parents who wanted to see him enter the military or civil service. After his generally weak academic performance, he entered the Kunstakademie in Dresden at the age of 16, and then went to the Kunstgewerbeschule in Berlin. There he studied with Bruno Paul and Orlik, who had little influence over him. In 1913 he spent several months in Paris where he saw the latest Cubist works, whose influence he likewise hardly retained. He was drafted in 1914 but was wounded and returned to Berlin at the end of 1916. After a trial, after which he was condemned to pay a heavy fine and destroy 30 incriminating plates, he fled to Paris in 1924 and then to Provence. Grosz was invited to teach in 1932 at the Art Students League in New York, where he settled and took up American citizenship....

Article

Hausmann, Raoul  

Austrian, 20th century, male.

Active in Germany 1900–1933, in France from 1939.

Born 12 July 1886, in Vienna, to Czech parents; died 1 February 1971, in Limoges, France.

Painter, collage artist, photomontage artist, photographer, sculptor.

Dadaism, Visual Poetry, Sound Poetry.

Berlin Dada, Phases group.

Raoul Hausmann lived in Berlin from 1900 to 1933, having gone there to study painting and sculpture. In 1912, he published his first critical analysis in the magazine Der Sturm (The Storm). In 1916, he collaborated on the magazine Die Aktion (Action) and the anarchist newspaper Die Freie Strasse (The Open Road), of which he became editor (1918–1919). From 1918 onwards, having met the Swiss artist Richard Huelsenbeck, he participated in the Dada movement by reciting poems in public or publishing them in the form of posters. At that time, he played a role, together with John Heartfield, in the invention of the photomontage technique. In ...

Article

Heartfield, John  

German, 20th century, male.

Born 19 June 1891, in Berlin-Schmargendorf; died 1968, in Berlin.

Painter, photomontage artist, photographer. Stage sets.

Dada.Berlin Dada, ASSO Group (Association of Revolutionary Figuration Artists)

John Heartfield was an apprentice in a Wiesbaden bookshop in 1905-1906. He was a pupil at the school of decorative arts in Munich ...

Article

Hendricks, Geoffrey  

British, 20th century, male.

Born 1931.

Performance artist, sculptor of assemblages, painter (mixed media).

Neo-Dadaism, Fluxus.

Geoffrey Hendricks joined Fluxus in 1966. In 1971, together with Bici Forbes Hendricks and George Maciunas, he created Flux Divorce, the movement's principal manifestation. He was also involved in several avant-garde festivals and, in ...

Article

Höch, Hannah  

German, 20th century, female.

Born 1 November 1889, in Gotha (Thuringia); died 1978 or 1979, in Berlin.

Painter, collage artist, sculptor, watercolourist, mixed media.

Dada. Berlin Dada.

Hannah Höch studied at the Städtischen Kunstgewerbe- und Handwerksschule Charlottenburg in Berlin from 1912 to 1914. In 1914, she received a bursary at the Werkbundausstellung in Cologne, then studied at the Lehranstalt des Kunstgewerbemuseums in Berlin with Emil Orlik. Her friendship with Raoul Hausmann dates from this period. In 1918, after World War I, she participated in the activities of the Berlin Dada group. Another member, Kurt Schwitters, suggested she add an ‘h’ to the end of her first name to make in palindromic. Höch exhibited for the first time in 1919, together with Hausmann, George Grosz and John Heartfield, at the Neumann Gallery in Berlin, showing watercolours and photomontages. Hausmann asked her to contribute politically inspired collages to the magazines ...

Article

Hörle, Angelika  

German, 20th century, female.

Born 1899, in Cologne; died 1923.

Painter.

Dadaism.

Cologne Dadaist.

Angelika Hörle was the wife of Heinrich Hörle. Her Dadaist drawings and collages were reproduced in the Dada movement's journals, Bulletin D, The Maggot of Shame ( Die Schammade) and ...

Article

Johns, Jasper  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 15 May 1930, in Allendale (South Carolina) or Augusta (Georgia).

Painter, sculptor, draughtsman, printmaker, mixed media, costume and set designer, illustrator. Encaustic.

Neo-Dadaism, Pop Art.

Jasper Johns grew up in South Carolina. He attended courses in art and painting at the University of South Carolina and, in 1948, enrolled in a commercial art school for two semesters in New York City. He served in the US Army for two years during the Korean War but was able to resume his studies at City College in New York in 1953, thanks to the GI Bill. It was at this time that he met his lifelong friend Robert Rauschenberg, the composer John Cage, and the dancer Merce Cunningham. He acted as artistic adviser for Cage and Cunningham’s dance company until 1972, collaborating with painters such as Robert Morris, Frank Stella, Bruce Nauman, and Andy Warhol. He lives and works in New York State and St Martin in the French West Indies. He has been a member of the New York Academy of Arts and Letters since 1988....

Article

Kassák, Lajos  

Éva Bajkay

(b Ersekujvar, Hungary, March 21, 1887; d Budapest, July 22, 1967).

Hungarian writer, painter, theorist, collagist, designer, printmaker and draughtsman. His family moved to Budapest in 1904, and, after finishing an apprenticeship as a blacksmith, in 1908 he began publishing stories and poems. In 1909–10 he travelled across Western Europe and spent some time in Paris, becoming acquainted with modern art and anarchist ideas. He published short stories, plays and poems in Budapest and from November 1915 he edited the periodical A Tett (‘The deed’), which was anti-militarist and discussed socialist theories and avant-garde ideas. In summer 1916 he spent time in the Kecskemét artists’ colony with his brother-in-law Béla Uitz and under his influence executed his first ink drawings (e.g. Landscape, 1916; Budapest, N.G.). Progressive young artists and aesthetes grouped themselves around Kassák; after A Tett was banned in September 1916, he started in November a new periodical, MA (‘Today’; see MA group), which he edited with Uitz (to ...

Article

Kassak, Lajos  

Hungarian, 20th century, male.

Born 21 March 1887, in Érsekujvár; died 1967, in Budapest.

Painter (including gouache), watercolourist, graphic designer, engraver, collage artist, sculptor.

Dadaism, Constructivism.

Lajos Kassák ran away from home aged 13. He started his working life as a blacksmith and locksmith. He came into contact with the workers' movement and contributed to the Social Democrat magazine ...