John Heartfield: Fighting the Dogs of War

Wednesday January 22, 2003 - Friday March 7, 2003

The German artist John Heartfield (1891-1968) was a founding member of the Berlin Dada group and shared a studio with painter and illustrator George Grosz, whom he met in Berlin in 1915. A member of the Communist Party, Heartfield was active designing books and posters as well as doing newspaper and magazine work for the Party in the 1920s, innovatively combining photography and typography in his work.

Many of Heartfield's photomontages were first published in the 1920s and 1930s in the Arbeiter-Illustrierte-Zeitung (Workers' Illustrated Paper) and the Volks-Illustrierte (People's Illustrated). On view in this exhibition were eighteen collotype reproductions of Heartfield's photomontages. Heartfield wrote that he and his brother Wieland worked together for peace: "My brother Wieland Herzfelde, my trusty helper and co-combatant against exploitation and war, wrote a poem entitled 'The Soldiers of Peace.'" This poem ends: "People, may your children / All be saved from war. / Preventing war / Shall be your triumph."