Hans Richter back on show in Berlin, the city that influenced his radical art


Berlin-born radical artist Hans Richter is the subject of a major exhibition in the city of his birth.

Richter, one of the founder members of the Dada movement in 1916, was highly politicised and attacked the establishment in his work.

“One can also pursue politics with art. Everything that intervenes in the processes of life, and transforms them, is politics,” he said

Timothy Benson, the show’s curator, said: “What makes him different from other artists is that he is not satisfied to stay in any particular style. And he takes risks. He doesn’t really care where it takes him.”

Richter experimented with film working with Man Ray, Marcel Duchamp and Jean Cocteau.

He came to the attention of the Nazis and his work was shown in the infamous ‘Degenerate Art’ exhibition in 1937.

The artist had already fled Berlin by 1933 to avoid the National Socialists and lived in the US and Switzerland.

Exhibition curator Timothy Benson spoke about his life in Berlin: “He did so much here. Not only was he born here, he was radicalised here. He made films, his first abstract films, around here, just on the outskirts of Berlin. He passed through here, even in 1932, briefly, already being pursued in a way by the Nazis. I really think that so much of what Richter is about comes from Berlin that it is a kind of coming home.”

Hans Richter died in 1976 at the age of 87.

Categories: Art

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