Monday, 27 June 2011

Artist of the Week: George Grosz

Georges Grosz (1893-1959) was a German painter whose early Expressionist style was transformed by the horrors he witnessed during WWI and the broken society of its aftermath. Sex, death and corruption were his major subjects and he found all of these in excess in Berlin during the Weimar Republic. He saw the worst that humanity had to offer and the grim humour and gross caricatures made quite sure that his audience got the message.

Self-portrait as Sex Murderer (1920)
Grosz had a taste for grim and grotesque humour, as illustrated in this macabre photograph.

The Tower of Love (1915)
A lighthouse keeper eagerly eyes the bloated body of a dead woman washed ashore.

Sex Murder in Acker street (1917)
In the corner of a seedy room the murderer looks guilty as he washes his victim's blood from his hands.

On the Hunt (1919)
Reducing romance to its vulgar essence, the small man fails to attract the woman he pursues, while prostitutes look on.

From the Cycle Parasites (1919)
 A bored pimp waits while his girls perform.

Circe (1927)
Grosz wrote in a letter to a friend 'Men are swine', and clearly his view of women wasn't much brighter.

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