Essay on The Dada Artists: Challenging Society's Conventional Values and Beliefs

Submitted By sfdghjkl
Words: 460
Pages: 2


Before the First World War, society in Europe was very by the book & they all trusted the government.
The dada movement was formed in Zurich, Switzerland during the time of world war one & peaked from 1916 to 1920. Dada began as a protest to the war, a revolt against a world that was capable of unspeakable horrors and was based on the principles of deliberate irrationality, anarchy, and cynicism and the rejection of laws of beauty and social organization. Reason and logic had led people into the horrors of war; the only route to salvation was to reject logic and embrace irrationality & anarchy in their eyes.
The dada movement was an international movement as the artists were constantly moving to escape the terrors of war & being killed.

In The Beginning, Dada was considered as ‘anti art’’ as they ignored aesthetics where as art at that time was all about the aesthetics. The main members were Hugo Ball, Emmy Hennings, Tristan Tzara, Hans Arp, Richard Huelsenbeck & Sophie Täuber. These artists did not follow traditional methods of art. The movement primarily involved visual arts, literature mainly poetry, theatre, and graphic design, and was characterized by absurdism, deliberate irrationality, disillusionment, cynicism, chance, randomness, and the rejection of the prevailing standards in art.
Tzara, in 1918, wrote a Dada manifesto considered one of the most important of the Dada writings. Other manifestos followed. One of Marcel Jancos stated ‘’ We had lost confidence in our culture. Everything had to be demolished. We would begin again after the "tabula rasa". At the Cabaret Voltaire we began by shocking common sense, public opinion, education, institutions, museums, good taste, in short, the whole prevailing order. ‘’
Once the war was over many of the artists returned to their home countries & began dada works in other cities.

The Dada Artists wished to challenge societies