Otto Dix

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Dix, Otto


Born Dec. 2, 1891, in Unterhaus, near Gera, Thuringia; died July 25, 1969, in Singen, Baden (Federal Republic of Germany). German painter and graphic artist.

Otto Dix, the son of a worker, studied at the Dresden (1919-22) and Dusseldorf (1922-25) academies of art. He was a member of a number of progressive societies and a professor at the Dresden Academy of Art (1927-33). During the 1920’s, Dix was involved in the dada, expressionist, and Neue Sachlichkeit movements; at this time he valued anarchistic and nihilistic artistic trends.

Eventually overcoming these tendencies, Dix created a number of sharply truthful, socially critical works. The injustices of bourgeois society aroused in Dix furious anger, profound anxiety, and shock. His works of the 1920’s combine ruthlessly detailed representations, bordering on caricature, with terrifying grotesque fantasy and tragically fractured forms and images which are frequently pathologically ugly. Under fascist rule, Dix was forbidden to teach or to exhibit his works; many were removed from museums, and some were destroyed. During the 1930’s, Dix made extensive use of the symbolism, subject matter, and formal devices of 16th- and 17th-century German and Dutch painting.

After 1945 he returned partially to expressionism, working in a loose style. As a result of Dix’ terrible experiences during both world wars, a spirit of irreconcilable protest permeates his antimilitarist works—The Trench (1920-23), a series of etchings entitled War (1924), the triptych War (1929-32; Picture Gallery, Dresden), and the frescoes War and Peace (1960; City Hall, Singen). With equal passion Dix expressed his hatred of the bourgeoisie, fascism, and the horrors of the capitalistic city; he also revealed his compassion for the impoverished and his solidarity with the working class—Parents of the Artist (1921, Public Art Collections, Basel), Mother and Child (1921; Picture Gallery, Dresden), the triptych The Big City (1927-28; State Gallery, Stuttgart), the antifascist allegories, The Seven Deadly Sins (1933) and The Triumph of Death (1934), and Ecce Homo (1949). Dix was a master portraitist; his portraits are exaggeratedly expressive and at times sharply cutting in their characterization—Marianne Vogelsang (1931; National Gallery, Berlin).

In the German Democratic Republic, Dix was elected a corresponding member of the Academy of Arts (1956) and an honorary member of the Union of German Artists (1966).


Turchin, V. “Otto Diks.” Inostrannaia literatura, 1971, no. 6.
Loffler, F. Otto Dix. Leben und Werk. Dresden [I960].


References in periodicals archive ?
The etching The Dressing Station, a companion piece to La Patrie and another work new to me, is a powerful image which calls to mind the prints of Goya and Otto Dix, albeit from a more restrained British perspective.
Maybe it's because I was seeing the work in Kerlin, but I was reminded of Otto Dix and George Grosz--like Pettibon, anarchic and fearless commentators on a social body whose decay they knew was already far advanced.
if your knowledge of World War I-related art begins with Otto Dix and ends with Britain's war poets, Reynolds has a delicious smorgasbord of additional works, movements, and creators for you to ponder--everything from Cubism to war memorials to antiwar theater--each presented with special focus on its impact on the future.
The exhibition also includes a series of lithographs by Paul Nash, prints by CRW Nevinson, paintings by George Grosz and William Orpen and two prints from the Otto Dix series Der Krieg.
Leading representatives of these movements--such as Max Beckmann, George Grosz and Kurt Schwitters--left Germany in the 1930s; others like Otto Dix and Oskar Schlemmer withdrew further into what became known as 'Inner Emigration'.
Art works from Picasso, Chagall and Otto Dix were among those on the government's website, according to German media.
Among previously unknown paintings was a self-portrait by German artist Otto Dix, in impeccable condition, painted around 1919 and valued at PS20million.
David Jones, Richard Nevinson, and Otto Dix Jones' drawing of the Spandau, now in the Regimental Museum of the Royal Welch Fusiliers in Caernarfon, was not intended as a statement about "the pity of war", or like Richard Nevinson's much better known painting La Mitrailleuse, now in the Tate Gallery, as a study in the subordination of the individual to the machine.
63), was deeply moved by an Otto Dix painting that showed a war invalid "who wants to tenderly draw his wife to him with his prosthetic arms.
The volume includes the work of many of the most famous Weimar era creators, such as Otto Dix, Bertolt Brecht, Fritz Lange and Walter Gropius and also showcases a wealth of works from lesser known but important artists.
Chaos and Classicism presents works by established masters of the first half of the 20th century, including Georges Braque, Carlo Carra, Giorgio de Chirico, Otto Dix, Pablo Gargallo, Fernand Leger, Aristide Maillol, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Pablo Picasso, Gio Ponti, Emile- Jacques Ruhlmann, and August Sander.
In this vein, the work of Otto Dix and Ernst Juenger is examined to shed light on Whale's theme of re-animation.