391 (magazine)  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

391 is the title of a Dada periodical edited by Francis Picabia from 1917 to 1924. It was published 19 times. He started in 1916, while in Barcelona, in which he published his first mechanical drawings (Portrait of an American Girl in the Nude). He continued the periodical with the help of Duchamp in America.

The title came from Alfred Stieglitz's New York periodical 291 (to which Picabia had contributed), and bore no relation to its contents. Despite Picabia's renown as an artist, the periodicalwas mostly literary in content, with a wide-ranging aggressive tone, possibly influenced by Alfred Jarry and Apollinaire. There were contributions by two men new to Dada: Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp. However 391 remained essentially the expression of the inventive, energetic and wealthy Picabia, who stated of it: "Every page must explode, whether through seriousness, profundity, turbulence, nausea, the new, the eternal, annihilating nonsense, enthusiasm for principles, or the way it is printed. Art must be unaesthetic in the extreme, useless and impossible to justify."

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