The Third Reich and Entartete Künst

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“As for the degenerate artists, I forbid them to force their so-called experience upon the public. If they do see fields blue, they are deranged, and should go to an asylum. If they only pretend to see them blue, they are criminals, and should go to prison. I'll purge the nation of them.” -Adolf Hitler Adolf Hitler's ascension to the position of Chancellor of the ailing Wiemar Republic in 1933 started the National Socialist (Nazi) regime. Shortly before the beginning of World War II, Germany witnessed vast changes while under the new dictatorial government, such as the censorship of art. While in power, Hitler established the Reich Chamber of Visual Art, whose sole responsibility was to determine if artwork was worthy to appear in national exhibitions. Paintings and sculptures that were not approved by the government were labeled as entartete künst (degenerate art). The strict regulations towards artwork affected artists across the Germany in various ways, resulting in some artists being imprisoned while others became prosperous. (Shirer, n.pag.) Because of the air raids across Europe, “not much is known about the art of the Third Reich”. Furthermore, “it is assumed that the artwork is so terrible that is not worthy of receiving the attention of art historians”(Adam 7,8). The Nazi art remnants of war-torn Europe were hidden from public up into the late 1990's . After the invasion of Berlin, some of it was taken by the Allied Forces and locked away while most of the remaining paintings and sculptures were hidden from the German people. The artwork was considered, “an embarrassment to the German government”. While in power, Hitler, “declared that... Cubists, Futurists, Dadaists, and Surrealists... were criminals and insa... ... middle of paper ... ...ct that the Third Reich did not last long and artists such as Beckmann were able to flee the country, Hitler failed to achieve his goal of ridding the world of modernists. However, the affects that the Third Reich had on painters and sculptors were diverse. Works Cited Adam, Peter. The Arts of the Third Reich. London: Thames and Hudson, 1992. Print. Breker, Arno. The Guard 1936. Bauer, Rudolf. Furioso. 1918. Oil on Board. Weinstein Gallery, San Francisco. Carmilly, Moshe. Fear of Art; Censorship and Freedom of Expression in Art. New York: Bowker, 1986. Print. Clinefelter, Joan L. Artists for the Third Reich: Culture and Race from Wiemar to Nazi Germany New York: Oxford. 2005. Print. Dix, Otto. Trench Warfare. 1923. Shirer, William L. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich a History of Nazi Germany. New York: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks. 1990. Print.

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