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AT

Derenthal, Ludger

Max Ernst. A retrospective

Catalogue of the exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, April 7 to July 10, 2005.

Max Ernst (1891-1976) was a pivotal figure in the history of twentieth-century art. A leader of the Dada movement in Germany, he later joined the circle of writers and artists gathered in Paris around Andre Breton, the unofficial founder of the Surrealist movement. At the outset of World War II, Ernst fled Germany for the United States, first going to New York and eventually settling in Sedona, Arizona. Ernst returned to Europe in 1950 and continued to explore Surrealist imagery and methods throughout his life. This important book accompanies the first retrospective exhibition of Ernst´s work held in the United States in thirty years. It examines his pioneering accomplishments in painting, collage, and sculpture and considers his use of the techniques of frottage, grattage, and decalcomania. Also featured are Ernst´s unique collage novels - narratives comprising disparate images culled from nineteenth-century engravings and combined in surreal, unsettling compositions. Leading scholars write on various aspects of Ernst´s life and art: Werner Spies on the Ernst in America; Ludger Derenthal on Ernst and politics; Pepe Karmel on Ernst and contemporary art; Thomas Gaehtgens on Ernst and the old masters; and Robert Storr on the collage novels.

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