Friday, 21 November 2014

TaTa Dada

The Real Life and Celestial Adventures of Tristan Tzara       

The MIT Press, 2014



Tristan Tzara, one of the most important figures in the twentieth century’s most famous avant-garde movements, was born Samuel Rosenstock (or Samueli Rosenstok) in a provincial Romanian town, on April 16 (or 17, or 14, or 28) in 1896. Tzara became Tzara twenty years later at the Cabaret Voltaire in Zurich, when he and others (including Marcel Janco, Hugo Ball, Richard Huelsenbeck, and Hans Arp) invented Dada with a series of chaotic performances including multilingual (and nonlingual) shouting, music, drumming, and calisthenics. Within a few years, Dada (largely driven by Tzara) became an international artistic movement, a rallying point for young artists in Paris, New York, Barcelona, Berlin, and Buenos Aires. With TaTa Dada, Marius Hentea offers the first English-language biography of this influential artist.
As the leader of Dada, Tzara created “the moment art changed forever.” But, Hentea shows, Tzara and Dada were not coterminous. Tzara went on to publish more than fifty books; he wrote one of the great poems of surrealism; he became a recognized expert on primitive art; he was an active antifascist, a communist, and (after the Soviet repression of the Hungarian Revolution) a former communist. Hentea offers a detailed exploration of Tzara’s early life in Romania, neglected by other scholars; a scrupulous assessment of the Dada years; and an original examination of Tzara’s life and works after Dada. The one thing that remained constant through all of Tzara’s artistic and political metamorphoses, Hentea tells us, was a desire to unlock the secrets and mysteries of language. [text publisher]

Monday, 30 June 2014

Hugo Ball Almanach 2014

Studien und Texte zu Dada
Neue Folge 5, 2014

ed. by Eckhard Faul for the
City of Pirmasens and the Hugo-Ball-Gesellschaft.
Published by edition text + kritik, Munich

Contents 5 (2015)

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Hans Richter Encounters – “From Dada till today”

Hans Richter
Berliner Festspiele
Martin Gropius Bau, Berlin
27 March to 30 June 2014

The oeuvre of Hans Richter (1888-1976) spanned nearly seven decades. Born in Berlin, he was one of the most significant champions of modernism. Berlin, Paris, Munich, Zurich, Moscow and New York were the major stations of his life. He was a painter and draughtsman, a Dadaist and a Constructivist, a film maker and a theoretician, as well as a great teacher. His great scroll collages remain icons of art history to this day. His work is characterised by a virtually unparalleled interpenetration of different artistic disciplines. The link between film and art was his major theme. Many of the most famous artists of the first half of the twentieth century were among his friends.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Dada-Archive donated to Museum Dr8888, the Netherlands

Dutch writer and art-critic K. Schippers donated his Dada archive to the Museum  Dr8888 in Drachten, the Netherlands. The museum is specialized in Dutch Dada. The archive consists of letters, clippings and photographs of Dutch Dada artists as Paul Citroen, Otto van Rees, Hendrik Werkman and the brothers Thijs and Evert Rinsema. The material was collected for his book Holland Dada, published in 1974. The museum plans to digitize the archive.

The donation will be part of the exhibition 'Holland Dada' and on view from April 12 to June 1, 2014 in Museum Dr8888.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Remediating the Avant-Garde

Magazines and Digital Archives

October 25–26, 2013 | Princeton University

This interdisciplinary conference will explore the conceptual and practical ground where traditional area studies, periodical studies, digital humanities, computer science, and library and information science converge.

We are interested in how these fields inform each other and challenge us to think and create in new ways, both as builders of digital resources and as scholars and teachers of avant-garde periodicals.

Click here for more information.

Friday, 19 July 2013

The Star Alphabet of E.L.T. Mesens

Dada and Surrealism in Brussels, Paris and London

The Star Alphabet of E.L.T. Mesens
Mu.Zee, Oostende
July 6-November 11, 2013

Édouard Léon Théodore Mesens (1903-1971) was one of the most important international protagonists in the art world of the first half of the 20th century. He was a flamboyant and talented artist: a musician, poet, publisher, photographer, curator, art dealer and collector. This exhibition brings the fascinating story of Dadaism and Surrealism to life via Mesens’ exceptional collages, writings and publications.
Part of the Surrealist movement from the very beginning, E.L.T. Mesens was one of its most powerful driving forces. He played an active role in the European international art scene and, from as early as the 1920s, could count people like the Romanian poet Tristan Tzara, the Dutch artist Theo van Doesburg and the French composer Erik Satie as friends.
Mesens is the man who gave René Magritte international fame and who introduced Surrealism to England. He was friends with numerous artists, including Roland Penrose, Lee Miller, Kurt Schwitters, Max Ernst, André Breton and Man Ray. From 1938 to 1950 he was director of The London Gallery where René Magritte, Paul Delvaux, Giorgio de Chirico and Pablo Picasso all exhibited their work. Mesens completely dedicated his life to poetry and the imagination. In the 1950s, he focused on making collages and initiated major exhibitions in the Casino of Knokke.
Discover Dada and Surrealism in Brussels, Paris and London. The exhibition The Star Alphabet of E.L.T. Mesens contains numerous works of art, writings and archive photos by René Magritte, Man Ray, Lee Miller, Paul Klee, Max Ernst, Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Paul Delvaux, Yves Tanguy, Amedeo Modigliani, Desmond Morris, Kurt Schwitters and many others!
A catalogue is available.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Forthcoming Publications

Generation Dada
The Berlin Avant-Garde and the First World War
Michael White
Yale University Press
Publication date: 31 Oct 2013
ISBN: 9780300169034
288 pages - 20 colour images + 130 black-&-white illustrations
See more at:

For the Berlin Dadaists, their identity as a collective - Club Dada, to members - was an integral part of their artistic practice. But the circumstances that brought together the likes of George Grosz, John Heartfield, Raoul Hausmann and Johannes Baader - renamed Propaganda Marshall, Monteurdada, Dadasoph and Oberdada within the organization - have remained largely unexamined until now. Drawing on extensive archival research, this book documents the group's beginnings in wartime Berlin and reveals how these relationships influenced its provocative acts, which were inextricably tied to the era's chaos and brutality. Studying how the Dadaists saw themselves as a new generation - in contrast to their pacifist forbears, the Expressionists - the book sheds light on key developments and events, such as the First International Dada Fair, held in Berlin in 1920. It also offers the first serious consideration of the group's role in constructing its own legacy, even as the works were deliberately rooted in the ephemeral.

After Dada
Marta Hegemann and the Cologne avant-garde
Dorothy Rowe
Manchester University Press
Publication date: September 2013
ISBN 978-0-7190-9007-3
240 pages -
See more at:

What happened in 1920s Cologne ‘after Dada’? Whilst most standard accounts of Cologne Dada simply stop with Max Ernst’s departure from the city for a new life as a surrealist in Paris, this book reveals the untold stories of the Cologne avant-garde that prospered after Dada but whose legacies have been largely forgotten or neglected. It focuses on the little-known Magical Realist painter Marta Hegemann (1894–1970). By re-inserting her into the histories of avant-garde modernism, a fuller picture of the gendered networks of artistic and cultural exchange within Weimar Germany can be revealed. This book embeds her activities as an artist within a gendered network of artistic exchange and influence in which Ernst continues to play a vital role amongst many others including his first wife, art critic Lou Straus-Ernst; photographers August Sander and Hannes Flach; artists Angelika Fick, Heinrich Hoerle, Willy Fick and the Cologne Progressives and visitors such as Kurt Schwitters and Katherine Dreier.