From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
In the history of the 20th century, the Interwar period lasted from 11 November 1918 to 1 September 1939 (20 years, 9 months and 21 days), the end of the First World War and the beginning of the Second World War. The Interwar period was relatively short, yet featured many significant social, political, and economic changes throughout the world. Petroleum-based energy production and associated mechanisation led to the prosperous Roaring Twenties, a time of both social mobility and economic mobility for the middle class. Automobiles, electric lighting, radio, and more became common among populations in the developed world. The indulgences of the era subsequently were followed by the Great Depression, an unprecedented worldwide economic downturn that severely damaged many of the world's largest economies.
Politically, the era coincided with the rise of communism, starting in Russia with the October Revolution and Russian Civil War, at the end of World War I, and ended with the rise of fascism, particularly in Germany and in Italy.
The era ended in September 1939, the beginning of World War II.
Expressionism and Symbolism are broad rubrics that describes several important and related movements in 20th century painting that dominated much of the avant-garde art being made in Western, Eastern and Northern Europe. Expressionism was painted largely between World War I and World War II, mostly in France, Germany, Norway, Russia, Belgium, and Austria. Expressionist artists are related to both Surrealism and Symbolism and are each uniquely and somewhat eccentrically personal. Fauvism, Die Brücke, and Der Blaue Reiter are three of the best known groups of Expressionist and Symbolist painters. Artists as interesting and diverse as Marc Chagall, whose painting I and the Village, (above) tells an autobiographical story that examines the relationship between the artist and his origins, with a lexicon of artistic Symbolism. Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Edvard Munch, Emil Nolde, Chaim Soutine, James Ensor, Oskar Kokoschka, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Max Beckmann, Franz Marc, Käthe Schmidt Kollwitz, Georges Rouault, Amedeo Modigliani and some of the Americans abroad like Marsden Hartley, and Stuart Davis, were considered influential expressionist painters. Although Alberto Giacometti is primarily thought of as an intense Surrealist sculptor, he made intense expressionist paintings as well. In the USA during the period between World War I and World War II painters tended to go to Europe for recognition. Modernist artists like Marsden Hartley, Patrick Henry Bruce, Gerald Murphy and Stuart Davis, created reputations abroad. While Patrick Henry Bruce, and Marsden Hartley experimented with expressionism. During the 1920s photographer Alfred Stieglitz exhibited Georgia O'Keeffe, Arthur Dove, Alfred Henry Maurer, Charles Demuth, John Marin and other artists including European Masters Henri Matisse, Auguste Rodin, Henri Rousseau, Paul Cézanne, and Pablo Picasso, at his New York City gallery the 291. In Europe masters like Henri Matisse and Pierre Bonnard continued developing their narrative styles independent of any movement.
- Aftermath of World War I
- European Civil War
- League of Nations
- Causes of World War II
- Events preceding World War II in Europe
- Golden Age of Aviation
- Interwar period events
- List of treaties