George Grosz and the Necessity of Offence

This article was first published online by Prospect magazine on 23 Sept 2013

Berlin during the 1920s is often seen as an oasis for libertines, glittering between two authoritarian periods: the Wilhelmine Reich, with its bloody culmination in the First World War, and the rise of the Nazis. The era is kept alive by enduring images of political assassinations and barricades, the banknote-littered streets of hyperinflation, transvestism and open displays of homosexuality. Brecht was at the theatre, Dietrich in the cinema, Dada in the galleries, and WH Auden chasing rough trade in the bars. Nowhere did the Twenties roar so dementedly as in Berlin, the city struggling to find both a stable identity and enough food to eat. Continue reading George Grosz and the Necessity of Offence