March 29, 2012

John Heartfield, one of the creators of photomontage in the 1920’s and 30’s (along with other representatives of Dada — Ernst, Hoch and Hausmann), employed the motto: “Use Photography as a Weapon.” And sure enough, he juxtaposed familiar photographic images to create a bleak picture of Europe on the verge of war. (The picture at left appeared in Prague on June 29, 1938. By the end of September the Munich Agreement was signed and the Sudetenland ceded to Hitler.) Text, particularly ironic text, was an essential element of almost all of Heartfield’s pictures. Here it reads: “This is the Salvation They Bring.”

John Heartfield, one of the creators of photomontage in the 1920’s and 30’s (along with other representatives of Dada — Ernst, Hoch and Hausmann), employed the motto: “Use Photography as a Weapon.” And sure enough, he juxtaposed familiar photographic images to create a bleak picture of Europe on the verge of war. (The picture at left appeared in Prague on June 29, 1938. By the end of September the Munich Agreement was signed and the Sudetenland ceded to Hitler.) Text, particularly ironic text, was an essential element of almost all of Heartfield’s pictures. Here it reads: “This is the Salvation They Bring.”

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