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Pen and brown-black ink (applied with the aid of drafting tools) and watercolor
Support: Cream wove paper (now discolored to light brown)
Sheet: 52.7 x 38 cm (20 3/4 x 14 15/16 in.)
Contemporary Collection of The Cleveland Museum of Art 1966.50.a
© Estate of George Grosz/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY
Student is one of a series of drawings Grosz made for Iwan Goll's 1921 play Methusalem: The Eternal Bourgeois. This satirical drama pitted the radical Student against the bourgeois capitalist Methusalem. Grosz's drawing shows a novel approach to costume design, one in which the actor would have spoken from behind full-size, masklike shields made from various machine parts and other commonplace objects. The annotations on the work suggest more about Grosz's unusual conception of the costume, for example: "Emits steam from time to time while speaking," which the artist wrote near the narrow tube jutting from the figure's head.
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