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dadadadadada....puppets.....da da..da da..da da
May 7, 2012 12:38 PM   Subscribe

The female members of the Dada movement are not so well known.
Sophie Taeuber was into puppets as was Hannah Höch; 2 & 3 and Emmy Hennings. Taeuber and Hennings were both heavily involved in Cabaret Voltaire.
A brief history of Radical Puppetry (Hannah Höch previously).
posted by adamvasco (15 comments total) 40 users marked this as a favorite

 
That's just absurd!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:49 PM on May 7, 2012


ahem. THE BARONESS ELSA VON FREYTAG-LORINGHOVEN. that is all.
posted by spindle at 12:51 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have a major crush on Emmy Hennings. It's really a shame that information on her is so scarce!
posted by One Second Before Awakening at 1:12 PM on May 7, 2012


fuck yes hanna hoch! thanks for this post. i was unaware of the radness that was sophie tauber arp and i can't wait to share her stuff with mrs. bees tonight.
posted by beefetish at 1:12 PM on May 7, 2012


Hoch is amazing. The Surrealists and Constructivists also had a number of great neglected women, like Dorothea Tanning and (the absolutely incredible) Natalia Goncharova.
posted by ThatFuzzyBastard at 1:16 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wonderful post.
posted by R. Mutt at 1:22 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wouldn't a Dada puppet be, like, a mime carrying a bucket of feathers or something?

I know it's not so well defined, so just sort of being on the scene at the time might be good enough to be called Dada, but much of Taeuber's stuff directly references Hopi characters and patterns, disqualifying those particular ones as Dada, and Hoch I'd have called a Futurist. I don't know anything about Hennings, though.

This is all pedantic artnerdery, of course. Very interesting and criminally overlooked.
posted by cmoj at 1:25 PM on May 7, 2012


Thank you for this post! As a fervent dadaist myself, it's always nice to see something about them pop up on the Blue.
posted by theartandsound at 1:27 PM on May 7, 2012


I love the female Dadaists. Well, I love the Dadaists in general, but people don't give the women the time of day.

A friend of mine spent one Holiday Season wishing everyone "Happy Hannah Höch." Few people noticed, but he occasionally got quite a reaction.

The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis did a show of her stuff back in the Mid-90s. There is a book.
posted by GenjiandProust at 1:27 PM on May 7, 2012


cmoj - Tauber was no hanger on, she was integral to Cabaret Voltaire both with puppetry and dance; Hennings was one of the stars of the show.
(pdf) and Hoch's piece “Cut With the Kitchen Knife Dada Through the Last Weimar Beer-Belly Cultural Epoch of Germany (1919-20)” was included in the 1st International Dada Fair.
Other Dada females though not neccessarily involved with puppets can be found here.
posted by adamvasco at 2:02 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, I know she was central to Cabaret Voltaire, and come to think of it I'm aware of more female Dadists than male. Like I said, though, the Hopi costumes are categorically not Dada, no matter how closely associated with a Dada group she was. It's okay to not be Dada.

It's a whole other discussion and probably derail as to whether any Dada is really Dada or which if any Dadists were aware of the irony implicit in "being Dadaist."
posted by cmoj at 2:15 PM on May 7, 2012


It's a whole other discussion and probably derail as to whether any Dada is really Dada or which if any Dadists were aware of the irony implicit in "being Dadaist."

cmoj, I'm fairly certain they were:

Each thing has its word, but the word has become a thing by itself.

The magic of a word - DADA - which for journalists has opened the door to an unforeseen world, has for us not the slightest importance.

posted by IAmBroom at 2:47 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


These remind me of dada theater design, they made a lot of miniature stage design and costumes. Long ago, I saw a rather wonderful exhibit of drawings of stage designs and costumes by Sonia Delaunay and Aleksandra Ekster, I think they both deserve more attention for their work, which was central to the dada scene.
posted by charlie don't surf at 3:18 PM on May 7, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was unaware of the radness that was sophie tauber arp... who must get extra irony points for being the dadaist on a banknote.
posted by Vetinari at 10:58 PM on May 7, 2012


Thank you spindle for reminding me about the Baroness. I did not know that Body Sweats had finally been published.
She was never part of Zurich Dada or as far as I can find out involved with puppets. Her life has been described as unhindered by sanity.
There is also this biography of her.
posted by adamvasco at 1:06 PM on May 8, 2012


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