in Zurch: Hugo Ball, Emmy Hennings, Richard Huelsenbeck, Hans Arp, Marcel
Janco, Tristan Tzara, Marcel Duchamps, Andre Breton.
Dada: "hobby horse" in French, "father" in Egnlish, "yes,yes" in Romanian,
a "cube" and a "wet-nurse" in Italian, or nothing: a phonestic babble on
the threshold of meaning.
- "DADA DOES NOT MEAN ANYTHING" -- Tzarza
- "Dada lends itself easily to puns. That is why we selected it." --
- "Cubism was a school of painting, futurism a political movement:
DADA is a state of mind."--Andre Breton.
Dada as childlike:
- "In Zurich in 1915, losing interest in the slaughterhouses of the
world war, we turned to the Fine Arts. While the thunder of the batteries
rumbled in the distance, we pasted, we recited, we versified, we sang with
all our soul. We searched for an elementary art that would, we thought,
save mankind from the furious folly of these times. " Hans Arp
- "Introduce symmetries and rhythms instead of principles. Contradict
the existing world orders. . . What we are celebrating is at once a buffoonery
and a requiem mass." Hugo Ball.
Dada as primal:
- "Childhood as a new world, and everything childlike and phantastic,
everything childlike and direct. . . in opposition to the senilities of
the world of grown-ups."--Hugo Ball.
- "Verse ohne Worte" (poems without words) or Lautgedichte [sound poems]
Dada as the body (vs. Culture as above the body):
- "I write because it's natural like I piss like I'm ill"--Tzarza
- "Art is senseless like Nature." Hans Arp
- "DADA remains with the framework of European weaknesses, it's
still shit, but from now on we want to shit in different colours" Tzarza.
Dada as oedipal urge (anti-authority, anti-bourgeois, anti-commodity)
- Tzarza's performance art: ". . . the bigh drum is brought in, Huelsenbeck
against 200, Ho osenlatz accentuated by the very big drum and the little
bells on his left foot--the people protest s hout smash windowpanes kill
each other demolish fight here come the police interruption. Boxing resumed.
Cubist dance, costumes by Janco, each man his own big drum on his head,
noise, Negro music / trabatgea bonoooooo oo ooooo"
Critique of individualism / nationalism:
- "Punch yourself in the face and drop dead." Tzarza.
- "The accentuated ‘I' has constant interests, whether they be greedy,
dictatorail, vain or lazy. It always follows appetities, so long as it
does not become absorbed in society. . . . Therefore, the individualistic-egoistic
ideal of the Renaissance ripened to the general union of the mechanized
appetites which we now see before us, bleeding and disintegrating."--Hans
Dada as negation; Negation as Affirmation
- "Order = disorder; ego = non-ego; afffirmation = negation." Tzarza
Anti-psychoanalysis, which domesticates or narrativizes the unconcious:
- Dada is "meta-irony" -- Duchamp.
- "Dada is "an irony that destroys its own negation and, hence, returns
in the affirmative."
- "There is no common basis in humanity's brains. The unconscious is
inexhaustible and uncontrollable. Its strength is beyond us.. . . Even
if we are familiar with it, who would dare state that we cou ld reconstruct
it as a viable generator of thoughts?" Tzarza.
Anti-psychology in narrative, characterization.
- Leger, Kandinsky use circus as model for new theatre: "Clowns, in
particular, build their composition on a very difnite alogicality. Their
action has no definite development, their movements are incongruous, their
efforts lead nowhere and, indeed, they're not meant to." Kandinsky.
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