Jean (Hans) Arp. Egg Beater (Eierschläger) from Merz 5. 7 Arpaden by Hans Arp. Arp Portfolio. Second Portfolio of the Merz Publisher (Merz 5. 7 Arpaden von Hans Arp. Arp Mappe. Zweite Mappe des Merzverlages). 1923

Jean (Hans) Arp Egg Beater (Eierschläger) from Merz 5. 7 Arpaden by Hans Arp. Arp Portfolio. Second Portfolio of the Merz Publisher (Merz 5. 7 Arpaden von Hans Arp. Arp Mappe. Zweite Mappe des Merzverlages) 1923

  • Not on view

Executed while Arp was visiting Schwitters in Hannover, this print portfolio was published as the fifth issue of Merz magazine. The title "Arpaden" is a made-up word meaning “Arp things.” In these seven lithographs, Arp created a series of simple yet graphically powerful "object pictures"—Mustache Hat, The Navel Bottle, Mustache Watch, Eggbeater—that combine allusions to body parts and everyday things.

Gallery label from Dada, June 18–September 11, 2006.

A pioneer of abstract art, Jean (born Hans) Arp was a founder of the Dada movement and was also active in Surrealist and Constructivist circles. In addition to sculpture, he produced poetry, painting and more than four hundred prints during his lifetime. Given his literary activities, it is not surprising that many of his prints were illustrations for books and journals, with a significant group made for Dada publications between 1916 and 1920. In 1915 Arp moved from Paris to Zurich, seeking refuge from the disturbing events of World War I. A year later, he was instrumental in establishing Dada with a group of like-minded artists and writers there who devoted themselves to challenging existing notions of art and encouraged experimentation with spontaneous and seemingly irrational methods of artistic creation. During this period, Arp evolved the practice of combining abstract shapes and relying on techniques of chance, on one occasion throwing debris onto the beach and recording its forms. In this way, he created biomorphic shapes that were often derived from nature or humble everyday objects that slyly and humorously suggest figurative presences. The portfolio 7 Arpaden was published as issue number five of the avant-garde journal Merz, a project of Arp's friend Kurt Schwitters. A play on the German word for commerce, "Merz" was the term Schwitters used to describe his wide range of artistic and literary activities. The title Arpaden is a neologism meaning "Arp things." Contrary to most issues of Merz, number five included no text but rather a series of what Arp called "object pictures" expressing a personal lanugage of forms and symbols.

Publication excerpt from an essay by Harper Montgomery, in Deborah Wye, Artists & Prints: Masterworks from The Museum of Modern Art, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, p. 100.
Medium
One from a portfolio of seven lithographs
Dimensions
composition (irreg.): 16 7/8 x 11 5/16" (42.9 x 28.7 cm); sheet: 17 3/4 x 13 3/4" (45.1 x 34.9 cm)
Publisher
Merzverlag (Kurt Schwitters), Hannover, Germany
Printer
probably A. Molling & Comp., Hannover, Germany
Edition
50
Credit
Gift of J. B. Neumann
Object number
578.1939.6
Copyright
© 2018 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn
Portfolio
Merz 5. 7 Arpaden by Hans Arp. Arp Portfolio. Second Portfolio of the Merz Publisher (Merz 5. 7 Arpaden von Hans Arp. Arp Mappe. Zweite Mappe des Merzverlages)
Department
Drawings and Prints

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).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at firenze@scalarchives.com. Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA's Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or moma.org, please email text_permissions@moma.org. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to archives@moma.org.

This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to digital@moma.org.