Ernst: German-born artist and a co-founder of Dadaism
Mach: Austrian-Czech physicist and philosopher
German born film director
Dadaist Max; Director Lubitsch; Surrealist Max; German
painter/poet; Physicist Mach; Arp contemporary
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is not for me either decorative amusement, or the plastic
invention of felt reality; it must be every time: invention,
– Max Ernst
Ernst (April 2, 1891 – April 1, 1976) was a German painter.
Ernst was born in Brühl, Germany. In 1909, he enrolled in
the University at Bonn to study philosophy but soon abandoned
these courses to pursue his interest in art. In 1913 he met
Guillaume Apollinaire and Robert Delaunay and traveled to the
Montparnasse Quarter in Paris where a gathering of artists from
around the globe was taking place.
1918, he married the art historian Luise Straus, a stormy
relationship that would not last. The next year he visited Paul
Klee and created his first paintings, block prints and collages,
and experimented with mixed media. During World War I he served
in the German army and after the war, filled with new ideas, Max
Ernst, Jean Arp and social activist Alfred Grünwald, formed
the Cologne, Germany Dada group but two years later in 1922, he
returned to the artistic community at Montparnasse in Paris.
experimenting, in 1925 he invented frottage,
a technique using pencil rubbings of objects. The next year he
collaborated with Joan Miró on designs for Sergei
Diaghilev. With Miró's help, Max Ernst pioneered grattage
in which he troweled pigment from his canvases. Max Ernst helped
to found the Dada movement, drawing a great deal of controversy
with his 1926 painting The
Virgin Spanking the Christ Child before Three Witnesses: Andre
Breton, Paul Eluard, and the Painter.
In Montparnasse, he was important in the birth of Surrealism
where an artist used images in a way that made no logical sense,
instead making the whims of their psyche the source of their
subject matter. After a period with the Surrealists, Ernst left
their group due in part to Andre Breton's desire to ostracize
Ernst's friend, the poet Paul Eluard. In 1934 he began to work in
sculpture, spending time with Alberto Giacometti. In 1938, the
American heiress Peggy Guggenheim acquired a number of Max
Ernst's works which she displayed in her new museum in London.
this period, Ernst developed a fascination with birds that was
prevalent in his work. His alter ego in paintings, that he called
was a fictional bird that he suggested was an extension of
himself stemming from an early confusion of birds and humans.
Ernst claimed his sister was born soon after his bird died, but
this could have been a story he invented to promote the "art"
of his art. Loplop often appeared in collages of other artists
work, such as collages like Loplop
presents Andre Breton
and they usually had a bird foot-like object superimposed on
another artists piece. Birds continued to appear in Ernst's work,
in such instances like the Angel
of Hearth and Home
of the Bride,
two of his post World War II paintings.
the outbreak of World War II, Max Ernst was detained as an enemy
alien but with the assistance of the American journalist Varian
Fry in Marseille, he managed to escape the country with Peggy
Guggenheim. They arrived in the United States in 1941 and were
married the following year. Living in New York City, along with
Marcel Duchamp and Marc Chagall, fellow avant-garde painters who
had fled the War in Europe, Max Ernst helped inspire the use of
Abstract expressionism among American painters.
Angel of Hearth and Home”
marriage to Peggy Guggenheim did not last, and in Beverly Hills,
California in October of 1946, in a double ceremony with Man Ray
and Juliet Bowser he married Dorothea Tanning. Ernst remained
primarily in the United States, living in Sedona, Arizona and in
1948 wrote the treatise "Beyond
before visiting Europe in 1950. He returned to Paris permanently
in 1953 and the following year he won the Venice Biennale. As a
result of the publicity, he began to achieve financial success.
1963 he and his wife moved to a small town in the south of France
where he continued to work. He designed stage sets and a fountain
for the city of Ambois. In 1975, a retrospective of his works was
held at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City, and
the Galeries Nationales du Grand-Palais in Paris published a
complete catalogue of his works.
Ernst died on April 1, 1976, in Paris, France and was interred
there in the Père Lachaise Cemetery.
Mach (February 18, 1838 – February 19, 1916) was an
Austrian-Czech physicist and philosopher and is the namesake for
the "Mach number" and the optical illusion known as
Mach was born in Chrlice (now part of Brno), Czech Republic. He
was educated at home until the age of 14, then went briefly to
gymnasium before entering the University of Vienna at 17. There
he studied mathematics, physics and philosophy, and received a
doctorate in physics in 1860. His early work was focused on
Doppler effect in optics and acoustics. In 1864 he took a job as
professor of mathematics in Graz, in 1866 he was also appointed
as a professor of physics. During that period Mach became
interested also in physiology of sensory perception. In 1867 Mach
took the chair of a professor of experimental physics at Charles
returned to the University of Vienna as professor of inductive
philosophy in 1895, but he suffered a stroke two years later and
retired from active research in 1901, when he was appointed to
the Austrian parliament. He continued to lecture and publish in
retirement. Mach died on 19 February 1916 in Haar, Germany.
of his studies in the field of experimental physics were devoted
to interference, diffraction, polarization and refraction of
light in different media under external influences. These studies
were soon followed by his important explorations in the field of
supersonic velocity. Mach's paper on this subject was published
in 1877 and correctly describes the sound effects observed during
the supersonic motion of a projectile. Mach deduced and
mathematically confirmed the existence of a shock wave which has
the form of a cone with the projectile at the apex. The ratio of
the speed of projectile to the speed of sound vp/vs is now called
the Mach number. It plays a crucial role in dualdynamics and
thermodynamics. He also contributed to cosmology the hypothesis
known as Mach's principle.
Lubitsch (January 28, 1892 – November 30, 1947) was a
German-born film director.
His urbane comedies of manners gave him the reputation of being
Hollywood's most elegant and sophisticated director; as his
prestige grew, his films were promoted as having "the
1947 he received an Honorary Academy Award for his distinguished
contributions to the art of the motion picture, and he was
nominated 3 times for Best Director.
in Berlin, as son of a Jewish tailor Simcha (Simon) Lubitch
(Russian: Любич) and his wife Anna
of Russian immigrants. Lubitsch turned his back on his father's
tailoring business to enter the theater, and by 1911, he was a
member of Max Reinhardt's Deutsches Theater. He made his film
debut the following year as an actor, but he gradually abandoned
acting to concentrate on directing.
finally left Germany for Hollywood in 1922, contracted as a
director by Mary Pickford. He directed Pickford in the film
Rosita; the result was a critical and commercial success, but
director and star clashed during its filming, and it ended up as
the only project that they made together. A free agent after just
one American film, Lubitsch was signed to a remarkable
three-year, six-picture contract by Warner Brothers that
guaranteed the director his choice of both cast and crew, and
full editing control over the final cut.
1940, he directed The Shop Around the Corner, an artful comedy of
cross purposes. The film reunited Lubitsch with his Merry Widow
screenwriter Raphaelson, and starred James Stewart and Margaret
Sullavan as a pair of bickering coworkers in Budapest, each
unaware that the other is their secret romantic correspondent.
David Thomson wrote of it:
Shop Around the Corner... is among the greatest of films... This
is a love story about a couple too much in love with love to fall
tidily into each other's arms. Though it all works out finally, a
mystery is left, plus the fear of how easily good people can miss
their chances. Beautifully written (by Lubitsch's favorite
writer, Samson Raphaelson), Shop Around the Corner is a treasury
of hopes and anxieties based in the desperate faces of Stewart
and Sullavan. It is a comedy so good it frightens us for them.
The cafe conversation may be the best meeting in American film.
The shot of Sullavan's gloved hand, and then her ruined face,
searching an empty mail box for a letter is one of the most
fragile moments in film. For an instant, the ravishing Sullavan
looks old and ill, touched by loss.
March 1947, Lubitsch was awarded a Special Academy Award for his
"25-year contribution to motion pictures". Presenter
Mervyn LeRoy, calling Lubitsch "a master of innuendo",
described some of his attributes as a filmmaker: "He had an
adult mind and a hatred of saying things the obvious way."
Lubitsch was the subject of several interviews at that time, and
consistently cited The Shop Around the Corner as his favorite of
his films. Considering his overall career, he mused, "I made
sometimes pictures which were not up to my standard, but then it
can only be said about a mediocrity that all his works live up to
died later that year in Hollywood of a heart attack, his sixth,
reportedly on the casting couch, groaning under the weight of a
young starlet. His last film, That Lady in Ermine with Betty
Grable, was completed by Otto Preminger and released posthumously
Lubitsch's funeral, Billy Wilder ruefully said, "No more
Lubitsch." William Wyler responded, "Worse than that.
No more Lubitsch pictures." Wilder had a sign over his
office door, which read "How would Lubitsch do it?". He
has a Star on the Walk of Fame at 7040 Hollywood Blvd.,
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