The Stick Men

George Grosz

George Grosz created his last major series of paintings and watercolours, the “Stick Men”, beginning in the mid-1940s in reaction to the devastating news about the Holocaust and the other atrocities of the Second World War.

The deployment of atomic bombs at the end of the war, and the threat of a Third World War, further deepened his pessimistic vision of mankind’s future.

He presented his “Stickmen” as dehumanized, famished beings aimlessly wandering through a contaminated, post-apocalyptic world.

The catalogue forcefully contradicting the widespread misconception that Grosz had become “soft” and apolitical during his American years.

The contrary is true: his Stick Men series is the culmination of the political and artistic convictions of a lifetime of struggle – an artistic legacy that, given the current state of the world, could not be more timely and relevant.

English and German text.

Published on occasion of the exhibitions:

‘The Grey Man Dances: The ‘Stick Men’ of George Grosz’, May – Oct 2023, Das Kleine Grosz Museum, Berlin; as well as a forthcoming exhibition at The Heckscher Museum of Art, Huntington, NY, 2024.

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