Sunday, May 01, 2011

What else in the retinue of interesting avant-gardes: George Grosz

A very good painter and satirist. Grosz was active in Germany and later fled, being one of the prime artists accused of spreading "Entartete Kunst" or 'Degenerate Art', including of course his satires on German society and on Nazism. Was a member of the Communist Party of Germany for five years after World War I. His working style for paintings was an adaptation of cubism, but like others who took from cubism he wasn't purely concerned with the fundamental questions that Picasso and others had brought up so much as using it as a tool for expression. This he shared with others, who he later separated with, and who later sympathized with artists and regimes that rejected abstract art all together and instead championed heroic vitalism, which they had initially used Cubism as a tool for communicating.

But his work remains interesting and stimulating, whatever the limitations caused by using Cubism as a tool for expressionism rather than a strategy in and of itself, limitations that remain no matter if the expression has a left wing context or one that's otherwise.

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