The Radical Legacy of Hannah Höch, One of the Only Female Dadaists
by Alina Cohen, artsy.net
Photomontages were the original remix. In the early 20th century, a group of European artists spliced together images they’d found in popular media, creating singular artworks via a strategy of sampling. The results show both individual statements by their makers and cross-sections of visual culture from a particular historical moment. While these creators called their movement by the nonsense word “Dada” (“DADA, as for it, it smells of nothing, it is nothing, nothing, nothing,” said artist Francis Picabia), their strange new artworks offered significant polemical ideas about gender, politics, and creativity during a particularly tumultuous era in Western history.
Hannah Höch, one of the few female members recognized by the movement, offered a refreshing antithesis to such macho constructions. Her own photomontages offer kaleidoscopic visions of German culture during the interwar era, often from a distinctly queer, feminist perspective.
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