Friday, July 29, 2011

Dada notes

Hey guys, these notes are mainly derived from WIKI. I searched other sites to supplement more than what wiki had to offer but there wasn't much else. I tried to condense Dada into its core essential ideas and people.

DADA Notes

Founders of Cabaret Voltaire in Zurich:
Hugo Ball, Emmi Hennings, Tristan Tzara
Marcel Ianco, Hans Arp, Sophie Tauber Arp
Hugo Ball created the Dada Manifesto was one of the principle founders of the movement. A very Dadaist poem he that Ball wrote was his poem “Karawane” consisting of nonsensical German words. Hugo Ball’s meaning however, came from its meaninglessness. This being the chief principle of the Dada movement that the ideologies of the day were terrible and invited war, death, and destruction. He was fascinated by anarchist philosophy.

The Cabaret Voltaire was a nightclub in Zurich Switzerland that became the birthplace of the anarchistic Dada art movement. Because Switzerland was a neutral country during WWI many artists sought refuge there. The cabaret allowed artists from all over to express themselves in regards to the current events. Performances of spoken word, dance and music were held.
The performances often were chaotic with brutality as a major theme. Other major themes included “meaninglessness of the modern world”, anti-art and anti-war, rejection of the current standards of art, anti-bourgeois and anarchistic.

Dada is the groundwork to abstract art and sound poetry, a starting point for performance art, a prelude to postmodernism, an influence on pop art, a celebration of antiart to be later embraced for anarcho-political uses in the 1960s and the movement that lay the foundation for Surrealism.
—Marc Lowenthal, translator's introduction to Francis Picabia's I Am a Beautiful Monster: Poetry, Prose, And Provocation
Dada were anti-Colonialist believing that Colonialism, bourgeois capitalism was the root cause of war. Colonialism is the expansion of a countries territory essentially establishing rule over foreign territory often taking it by force. The new rulers claim sovereignty and wealth streams out of the colonized foreign land into the economy of the sovereign territory. For example, the East India Company drove the expansion of the British Empire in Asia creating much profit from the opium export trade 
Raul Hausmann
The Mechanical Head (excerpt from the Wiki entry)
The most famous work by Hausmann, Der Geist Unserer Zeit - Mechanischer Kopf (Mechanical Head [The Spirit of Our Age]), c. 1920, is the only surviving assemblage that Hausmann produced around 1919-20. Constructed from a Hairdresser's wig-making dummy, the piece has various measuring devices attached including a ruler, pocket watch mechanism, typewriter, camera segments and a crocodile wallet.
"Der Geist Unserer Zeit - Mechanischer Kopf specifically evokes the philosopher George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831). For Hegel...everything is mind. Among Hegel's disciples and critics was Karl Marx. Hausmann's sculpture might be seen as an aggressively Marxist reversal of Hegel: this is a head whose "thoughts" are materially determined by objects literally fixed to it. However, there are deeper targets in western culture that give this modern masterpiece its force. Hausmann turns inside out the notion of the head as seat of reason, an assumption that lies behind the European fascination with the portrait. He reveals a head that is penetrated and governed by brute external forces." Jonathan Jones.

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