Hans Richter: Activism, Modernism, and the Avant-Garde by Stephen C. Foster

By Stephen C. Foster

Few artists spanned the activities of early-20th-century paintings as thoroughly as did Hans Richter. Richter was once an important strength within the advancements of expressionsim, Dada, de Stijl, constructivism, and Surrealism, and the author, with Viking Eggeling, of the summary cinema. besides Theo van Doesburg, Lazlo Moholy Nagy, El Lissitsky, and some others, he's one of many artists the most important to an realizing of the function of the humanities within the reconstruction period following international battle I. After his emigration to the us in 1941, he contributed greatly to modernism within the usa and served as a massive conduit among the yank and eu artwork groups. so much American students have interested by Richter's movie paintings and feature favoured a strictly formalist technique that separates paintings and politics. The participants to this improvement of the early-20th-century avant-garde and his political activsm. while Richter's paintings, quite that of his prior, eu occupation, is considered in its historic and political context, he emerges as an artist dedicated to the ability of artwork to alter the material of social, political and cultural affairs. The essays during this publication, which accompanies a 1998 Richter retrospective held in Valencia, Spain, and on the college of Iowa paintings Museum, are equipped approximately round the expressionist and Dada years, Richter's brief tenure in Munich's postwar progressive moment Council Republic, his imperative involvement in overseas constructivsm and the improvement of the summary cinema, and the politicization of movie that arose from his anti-Nazi actions of the overdue '20s and '30s.

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10 After his stay in Berlin, he returned to Switzerland. There, he was concerned with the founding of the Bund Radikaler Ku¨nstler (League of Radical Artists) and of a periodical titled Zu¨rich 1919. ” 11 Richter’s departure can be dated fairly accurately, since he took part in the eighth Dada soire´e on 9 April 1919 in Zurich.

4 Selbstportra¨t (akademisch), c. , Selbstportra¨t [akademisch], fig. 6 Landschaft—Schlittenfahrt, c. 7 A¨therisch, c. 11 It may have been this early sensitivity to the “musical” potential of art, inherent in its nonrepresentational or autonomous qualities, that led Richter to simplify his compositions into sweeping rhythmic forms. This direction was clearly strengthened by his empathy with the expressionist tendencies then on view in Herwarth Walden’s Sturm galleries in Berlin. In a series of studies of Berlin’s Kurfu¨rstendamm (fig.

41. Richter, The World Between, 13–16 and fig. 6, p. 12; Gray, Hans Richter by Hans Richter, 30. 42. For example, the drawing Die Erde ohne Vernunft (The Earth Without Sense, 1917, illus. in Gray, Hans Richter by Hans Richter, 30) is copied in the lower center of An die Mu¨tter Europas (To the Mothers of Europe) in Zeit-Echo 3 (June 1917): 15. 43. Richter, The World Between, 17, 19, and fig. 14, p. 20. The drawing is in the Kunsthaus Zu¨rich (inv. no. Z1977/50). 44. , 10. 45. Zeit-Echo 3 (June 1917): 15.

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