The Song of the Flesh (1920) by Max Ernst

The Song of the Flesh - Max Ernst - 1920

Artwork Information

TitleThe Song of the Flesh
ArtistMax Ernst
Date1920
MediumCollage with fragments of photographs, gouache and pencil on card
Dimensions12 x 21 cm
Current LocationMusee National d'Arte Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris
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About The Song of the Flesh

Max Ernst, a key member of the Dada and Surrealist movements in Europe during the early 20th century, created The Song of the Flesh in 1920. This piece exemplifies his technique of using dreamlike imagery to mock social conventions. In this surrealist artwork, he gives a satirical interpretation of World War II.

Ernst’s childhood experiences in the forest near his birthplace haunted him throughout his life and found their way into much of his work. He was one of the first artists who applied Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams to explore his deep psyche for surreal images that tapped into the common dream imagery present in the universal unconscious.

Ernst was deeply traumatized by his experience serving as a soldier during World War I and emerged highly critical, even disdainful, towards western society at large. These experiences continued to shape and influence Ernst’s art even as he personally experienced great terror during World War II.

The Song of the Flesh reflects Ernst’s groundbreaking style that used different media like film, frottage techniques along with painting and collage. His unique blend between personal memory and myth-seeking gave visual form to produce extraordinary works such as Europe after Rain which is considered one of his most famous pieces which incorporates several images together to convey complex meanings through juxtapositioning techniques.

Overall , Max Ernst’s idiosyncratic style made indelible marks on both Dadaism and Surrealism movements creating some boldest artworks with subversive humor mocking status quo which continues inspiring new generations who seek creative outlets pushing boundaries today .

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