Choosing a Web 2.0 Start Up Name
July 19, 2006 6:13 PM   Subscribe

DADA Hits the MOMA. DaDaism was an art movement that arose prior to the rubble of WW1 where the artists led a creative revolution that shaped the course of modern art by combining different mediums to create a message of protest and hope. The MOMA exhibit tells one story (scroll to data and select full program - req flash 7) and the New Yorker reaffirms the influence on art today. However, the real story is with Richard Huelsenbeck, the ring leader and founder of the DaDa movement An interview with him from December 1960 (45 mins mp3) explains the start - as one of the few German artists in protest to the war. My favourite part is where he tells of picking out the name DaDa from an encyclopedia at a cabaret.
posted by Funmonkey1 (23 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
More fun and statement then art, but oh yeah, what a pointed stick in the eye to the establishment.
posted by caddis at 6:19 PM on July 19, 2006

If this is the same one that was in DC, it's awesome.

More fun and statement then art

I think if you saw the exhibit (again, if it's the same one as in DC) you'd disagree, and also come to the conclusion that statement and art, in the 20th century, are indistinguishable. That rubs some the wrong way, but once you see the art in question in person, it all makes sense. Especially when you consider the embarassment of beautiful riches to come out of the 19th century, and the cavalcade of human horror that was both concurrent and would emerge post-Dada.
posted by cell divide at 6:26 PM on July 19, 2006

This was at the Museum of Modern Art (East Wing) of the Smithsonian not too long ago. Outside the exhibit, under the great Calder mobile in the atrium, were a bank of pianos and percussion instruments, all connected by wires. A sign proclaimed that at 3pm, a portion of a dadaist composition would be played automatically. As the time approached, dozens of tourists and museum goers gathered to hear the composition, lining up on the balconies and along the roped off area in front of the instruments.

And then it started.

The most god-awful cacophony of piano wailing, drum banging, bell ringing NOISE. Within seconds, people drifted away, hands covering ears. Startled babies cried.

Oh, how very, very dada it was.
posted by crunchland at 6:31 PM on July 19, 2006

Crunchland, what you miss completely is why the movement existed in the first place. Listen to the podcast link provided and you won't be so quick to say "oh, how very, ver dad it was".
posted by Funmonkey1 at 6:44 PM on July 19, 2006

I love Dada. Guerilla peacefare. Art as a state of being. Art as a state of not being. It is always six o'clock.
posted by ZachsMind at 6:47 PM on July 19, 2006

recent dadaism
posted by zenzizi at 6:47 PM on July 19, 2006

Richard Huelsenbeck...strange, I'm reasonably aware of Dada, but I've never heard of him. I wonder why not. (Of course, I am a layman, a dilletante.)

I think of Tzara, Arp and Duchamp...

I'm more familiar with the Surrealists, who, as you may know, originally thought visual art would not be a very effective medium for their vision (maybe I should have used the word ideas instead of vision). They chose poetry, pamphlets, direct action, etc.

As did the Dadaists, for the most part.

Me, I worship at the sky grave of Max Ernst, surrealist, who is often historically associated with the Dada movement.
posted by kozad at 7:16 PM on July 19, 2006

Double in part.
posted by nickyskye at 7:22 PM on July 19, 2006

Last I checked, New York Magazine isn't the New Yorker...
posted by scalespace at 7:52 PM on July 19, 2006

scalespace, you are right. My bad, it's probably my dyslexia confusing the similar fonts. Silly mistake.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 7:57 PM on July 19, 2006

You know, it doesn't particularly matter why it was written, or what the point was behind it. I'm telling you what happened and how people reacted. We all thought we were going to be treated to a few melodies from a bunch of player pianos and instead, we were bombarded with noise. It was pretty hilarious, really.
posted by crunchland at 8:04 PM on July 19, 2006

What is dada?

(Sorry, I have a soft spot specifically for this door at the Wonderland Ballroom in DC.)
posted by kdar at 8:06 PM on July 19, 2006

See also: Daughter of Dada at the Francis M. Naumann Gallery

And an article on it here.
posted by munyeca at 8:15 PM on July 19, 2006

Dada! One of my favorite-est art forms!

*Fires pistol blindly into MetaFilter, fills bathtub with hammers*
posted by Scoo at 9:42 PM on July 19, 2006

Suggested tags: fish, pants.
posted by the_bone at 9:57 PM on July 19, 2006

I just finally got the title

posted by blacklite at 12:17 AM on July 20, 2006

I really enjoyed the exhibit (played hooky last Friday to go), but more from the standpoint of the history of it, then for the actual art. Growing up in this country, if you relied on scholastic history textbooks for your understanding of history, you would never believe that anyone ever protested a war.

Seeing this exhibit, with its explicit treatment of the disgraceful brutality and senselessness of war (and as far as senseless wars go, WWI was a beaut) really brought home to me the fact that regardless of how much we grow as a race of beings, how much we advance scientifically or philosophically, our leaders will always try to lead us down the path of death and destruction.

Great links, thanks for sharing.
posted by psmealey at 2:52 AM on July 20, 2006

See also: the recent show Dada's Boys, at Fruitmarket, Edinburgh - it was a sort of post-Dada meets Dada in a self-reflexive all-male art club thing.
posted by jack_mo at 3:27 AM on July 20, 2006

Wikipedia doesn't credit the translator of its version of Hugo Ball's "Dada Manifesto," but it's pretty bad. The translator seems to think einfach furchtbar means "quite terribly simple" and allerwerteste means "esteemed sirs." I posted my own translation here, with a link to the original German if anyone's interested.
posted by languagehat at 5:37 AM on July 20, 2006

Choosing a Web 2.0 Start Up Name

Welllll ... Dada is also a nice mail list server built by an artist and admirer of the form/not-form so ...
posted by nofundy at 5:51 AM on July 20, 2006

The most god-awful cacophony of piano wailing, drum banging, bell ringing NOISE. Within seconds, people drifted away, hands covering ears. Startled babies cried.

posted by R. Mutt at 6:46 AM on July 20, 2006

The line is already curling around Mott street.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 7:16 AM on July 20, 2006

Don't forget Beatrice Wood: Mama of Dada.
posted by SteveInMaine at 7:31 AM on July 20, 2006

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