The Anti-Head is a three-volume anthology of poems by Tristan Tzara, the Romanian poet whom Ernst had first befriended through the Dada movement. Ernst’s etchings for the book’s first volume signal a shift in his approach to printmaking after World War II, when he began using sinuous lines to generate biomorphic faces, figures, and bird- and fish-like forms. Tzara had created the titular “Mr. Aa the Anti-Philosopher” early in his career as a mocking, self-referential embodiment of Dada’s antiestablishment ideals.
Gallery label from Max Ernst: Beyond Painting, September 23, 2017-January 1, 2018.