Tuesday, November 29, 2016

In Memory of Oscar Wolfman: Entartete Kunst

The title of Oscar's second solo show, which he raced to complete in 2011 shortly before his death, was "Entartete Kunst." He borrowed the title from shows of "Degenerate Art" mounted by the Nazis in the 1930's as examples of decadence intended to justify National Socialist policies. As he pointed out, those exhibitions paradoxically introduced many viewers to modernist art who had never seen it before. In Oscar's show, he often substituted "Entartete Kunst" for the conventional "Untitled" of many photographs, the above image among them. Lengths of ribbon wrapped around the arms of men in a camp chorus line replace the tefiillin of orthodox Jewish prayer practice.

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