#WECANALLDRAW Fall 2016 workshop starts its first session with the funnest project ever – photomontage. The participants have to find images from a stack of Japanese fashion magazines and compose their own images. The images do not have to “make sense”; in fact, the more absurd they look, the more fun they are. Time quickly ran out as the participants are starting to get a hang of this method of drawing. We will continue with photomontage next session and might introduce other mediums beside scissors and glue to spike things up. Here is a little history of what photomontage is: http://www.nga.gov/exhibitions/2006/dada/techniques/
Collectively developed by the Berlin Dada group, photomontage is a variation of collage in which pasted items are actual photographs or photographic reproductions culled from the press. The appropriation of the mass media provided endless fodder for the dadaists scathing critiques, and the disjunctive cuts of photomontage effectively captured the fissures and shocks of modernity. Substituting scissors and glue for brushes and paint, and calling themselves monteurs (mechanics) rather than artists, the Berlin dadaists employed photomontage in their radical assault on traditional art.
Artists outside of Berlin also experimented with the new technique. In Cologne, Max Ernst frequently used military photographs as source material for photomontages. Pasting together images of planes or bombs with humans, he created haunting machine figures that reflect the destructive capacity of the new technologies used in World War I.