John Heartfield  

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-'''John Heartfield''' ([[June 19]], [[1891]][[April 26]], [[1968]]) is the [[Anglicisation|anglicized]] name of the [[Germany|German]] [[photomontage]] artist '''Helmut Herzfeld'''. He chose to call himself ''Heartfield'' in 1916, to criticize the rabid [[nationalism]] and anti-[[United Kingdom|British]] sentiment prevalent in Germany during [[World War I]].+'''John Heartfield''' (born '''Helmut Herzfeld'''; 19 June 1891 – 26 April 1968) was a [[German artist]] who pioneered the use of [[political art|art as a political weapon]]. Some of his most famous [[photomontages]] were [[anti-Nazi]] and [[anti-fascist]] statements. Heartfield also created book jackets for book authors, such as [[Upton Sinclair]], as well as stage sets for contemporary playwrights, such as [[Bertolt Brecht]] and [[Erwin Piscator]].
 + 
 +Herzfeld chose to call himself ''Heartfield'' in 1916, to criticize the rabid [[nationalism]] and anti-[[United Kingdom|British]] sentiment prevalent in Germany during [[World War I]].
==Career== ==Career==
-In 1918 Heartfield began at the Berlin [[Dada]] scene, and the [[Communist Party of Germany]]. He was dismissed from the [[Reichswehr]] film service on account of his support for the [[Strike action|strike]] that followed the assassination of [[Karl Liebknecht]] and [[Rosa Luxemburg]]. With [[George Grosz]], he founded ''[[Die Pleite]]'', a satirical magazine. After meeting [[Bertolt Brecht]], who was to have an influence on his art, Heartfield developed photomontage into a form of political and artistic representation. He worked for two communist publications: the daily [[Die Rote Fahne]] and the weekly [[Arbeiter-Illustrierte-Zeitung]] (AIZ), the latter of which published the works for which Heartfield is best remembered.+In 1918 Heartfield began at the [[Berlin Dada]] scene, and the [[Communist Party of Germany]]. He was dismissed from the [[Reichswehr]] film service on account of his support for the [[Strike action|strike]] that followed the assassination of [[Karl Liebknecht]] and [[Rosa Luxemburg]]. With [[George Grosz]], he founded ''[[Die Pleite]]'', a satirical magazine. After meeting [[Bertolt Brecht]], who was to have an influence on his art, Heartfield developed photomontage into a form of political and artistic representation. He worked for two communist publications: the daily [[Die Rote Fahne]] and the weekly [[Arbeiter-Illustrierte-Zeitung]] (AIZ), the latter of which published the works for which Heartfield is best remembered.
In 1933, after the [[National Socialist German Workers Party|National Socialists]] came to power in Germany, Heartfield relocated to [[Czechoslovakia]], where he continued his photomontage work for the ''AIZ'' (which was published in exile); in 1938, fearing a German takeover of his host country, he left for England living in [[Hampstead]]. He settled in [[East Germany]] and [[East Berlin|Berlin]] after [[World War II]], in 1954, and worked closely with theater directors such as [[Benno Besson]] and [[Wolfgang Langhoff]] at [[Berliner Ensemble]] and [[Deutsches Theater]]. In 1933, after the [[National Socialist German Workers Party|National Socialists]] came to power in Germany, Heartfield relocated to [[Czechoslovakia]], where he continued his photomontage work for the ''AIZ'' (which was published in exile); in 1938, fearing a German takeover of his host country, he left for England living in [[Hampstead]]. He settled in [[East Germany]] and [[East Berlin|Berlin]] after [[World War II]], in 1954, and worked closely with theater directors such as [[Benno Besson]] and [[Wolfgang Langhoff]] at [[Berliner Ensemble]] and [[Deutsches Theater]].
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The Heartfield piece ''The Hand has 5 Fingers'' with its original text: ''"5 fingers make a hand! With these 5 grab the enemy!"'', was referenced by [[alternative metal]] band [[System of a Down]]. A text printed on the back of the album ''[[System of a Down (album)|System of a Down]]'' reads: ''"The hand has five fingers, capable and powerful, with the ability to destroy as well as create"''. It should be noted however that this concept is not confined to Heartfield's work and is present, for example, in the symbolism of the [[raised fist]]. The Heartfield piece ''The Hand has 5 Fingers'' with its original text: ''"5 fingers make a hand! With these 5 grab the enemy!"'', was referenced by [[alternative metal]] band [[System of a Down]]. A text printed on the back of the album ''[[System of a Down (album)|System of a Down]]'' reads: ''"The hand has five fingers, capable and powerful, with the ability to destroy as well as create"''. It should be noted however that this concept is not confined to Heartfield's work and is present, for example, in the symbolism of the [[raised fist]].
- +==See also==
 +*[[The photomontages of John Heartfield]]
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John Heartfield (born Helmut Herzfeld; 19 June 1891 – 26 April 1968) was a German artist who pioneered the use of art as a political weapon. Some of his most famous photomontages were anti-Nazi and anti-fascist statements. Heartfield also created book jackets for book authors, such as Upton Sinclair, as well as stage sets for contemporary playwrights, such as Bertolt Brecht and Erwin Piscator.

Herzfeld chose to call himself Heartfield in 1916, to criticize the rabid nationalism and anti-British sentiment prevalent in Germany during World War I.

Contents

Career

In 1918 Heartfield began at the Berlin Dada scene, and the Communist Party of Germany. He was dismissed from the Reichswehr film service on account of his support for the strike that followed the assassination of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg. With George Grosz, he founded Die Pleite, a satirical magazine. After meeting Bertolt Brecht, who was to have an influence on his art, Heartfield developed photomontage into a form of political and artistic representation. He worked for two communist publications: the daily Die Rote Fahne and the weekly Arbeiter-Illustrierte-Zeitung (AIZ), the latter of which published the works for which Heartfield is best remembered.

In 1933, after the National Socialists came to power in Germany, Heartfield relocated to Czechoslovakia, where he continued his photomontage work for the AIZ (which was published in exile); in 1938, fearing a German takeover of his host country, he left for England living in Hampstead. He settled in East Germany and Berlin after World War II, in 1954, and worked closely with theater directors such as Benno Besson and Wolfgang Langhoff at Berliner Ensemble and Deutsches Theater.

In 1967 he visited Britain and began preparing a retrospective exhibition of his work, "photomontages", which was subsequently completed by his widow Gertrude and the Deutsche Akademie der Künste, and shown at the ICA in London in 1969.

In 2005, Tate Britain held an exhibition of his photomontage pieces.

Works

His photomontages satirising Adolf Hitler and the Nazis often subverted Nazi symbols such as the swastika in order to undermine their propaganda message.

One of his more famous pieces, made in 1935 entitled Hurrah, die Butter ist Alle! was published on the frontpage of the AIZ in 1935. A parody of the aesthetics of propaganda, the photomontage shows a family at a kitchen table, where a nearby portrait of Hitler hangs and the wallpaper is emblazoned with swastikas. The family — mother, father, old woman, young man, baby, and dog — are attempting to eat pieces of metal, such as chains, bicycle handlebars, and rifles. Below, the title is written in large letters, in addition to a quote by Hermann Göring during food shortage. Translated, the quote reads: "Iron has always made a nation strong, butter and lard have only made the people fat".

Homages in modern culture

Hurrah, die Butter ist Alle! served as the inspiration behind the song "Metal Postcard (Mittageisen)" by Siouxsie & the Banshees; the song was re-recorded in German and released as a single with Heartfield's work as the cover art.

The band Blurt recorded a song called "Hurrah! Die Butter Ist Alle" on their 1986 album "Poppycock"

The Heartfield piece The Hand has 5 Fingers with its original text: "5 fingers make a hand! With these 5 grab the enemy!", was referenced by alternative metal band System of a Down. A text printed on the back of the album System of a Down reads: "The hand has five fingers, capable and powerful, with the ability to destroy as well as create". It should be noted however that this concept is not confined to Heartfield's work and is present, for example, in the symbolism of the raised fist.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "John Heartfield" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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