Dada on Film

Jun 24–Sep 4, 2006

MoMA

Dada was a provocative and irreverent art movement, founded in Switzerland in the early 20th century, in which a seemingly chaotic, spontaneous, and pessimistic aesthetic influenced painting, sculpture, theater, literature, and film. The movement’s name is a willfully nonsensical word, intended to punctuate the meaninglessness artists saw in their contemporaneous worldview. Dada filmmakers such as Hans Richter, Man Ray, and Viking Eggeling were challenged by the developing technology of filmmaking in the 1920s. This confluence of technology and aesthetic experimentation suited the Dadaists’ passion for the machine-made object. The visual disruption created by the Dada filmmakers in the 1920s provided a legacy of aesthetic language for the cinematic experiments of future generations of avant-garde artists. The landmark films in this program—all produced between 1921 and 1928—are also on view within the context of other works in other mediums by the same artists in the Dada exhibition on the sixth floor of the Museum. All films are drawn from MoMA’s collection and are silent.

Organized by Anne Morra, Assistant Curator, Department of Film and Media.

Licensing

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit https://www.moma.org/research-and-learning/circulating-film.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].

Feedback

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].