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Tacit Dean | Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Erinnerung aus dem Weltkrieg, from the portfolio The Russian Ending, 2001, photogravure

The Russian Ending by Tacita Dean is part of the group exhibition Dix and the Present at Deichtorhallen Hamburg.

Presented in the Deichtorhallen’s Hall for Contemporary Art, the exhibition investigates Otto Dix and his continuing influence on art today. For the first time, Dix’s oeuvre from the Nazi era is examined in the context of a comprehensive exhibition. Accordingly, the artistic impact of political censorship, conformity and political iconography with reference to contemporary art is taking centre stage.

Starting out from his radical and provocative – and to this day popular – paintings of the 1920s, Otto Dix (1891-1969) went on to create an ostensibly apolitical body of work after 1933, whose visual language was far less aggressively critical of society. During the Nazi era, his previously striking depictions of German society morphed into partly subversive, partly subtle forms of contemporary social critique.

Images of war and socio-critical milieu studies gave way mainly to landscapes, commissioned portraits and, from 1937 on, Christian allegorical subjects. To date, the work Otto Dix created during the Nazi era has taken a backseat in exhibitions and research – a lack of attention the exhibition Dix and the Present aims to redress.

The exhibition features Tacita Dean’s The Russian Ending 2001, a portfolio of twenty black and white photogravures, which borrows its title from the early Danish cinema tradition of making two alternate endings for a film: one happy for the American market and one tragic for Russian audiences.

Link to Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

Tacita Dean, The Russian Ending, 2001, photogravure, Installation image © Deichtorhallen Hamburg 2023 by Henning Rogge

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