The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of March 3, 2024

The War:  Seen on the Slope at Cléry-sur-Somme

The War: Seen on the Slope at Cléry-sur-Somme

(German, 1891–1969)
© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn
Catalogue raisonné: Karsch 97
Location: not on view


Otto Dix married technique and expression in these painfully candid images of war from a portfolio of 50 prints. He exploited the corrosive qualities of the acid used to etch the copper plate by promoting a grainy unevenness, which reinforces the physical and moral decay in his horrific yet ordinary scenes of war. Nihilistic and brutal, Dix’s images match the Expressionists’ desire for raw truth. At times, they also call upon traditional iconography, such as the skulls, or memento mori (reminder of death), in Dead Men before the Position near Tahure. Dix called war both “horrible” and “tremendous,” and viewed the artist’s role as that of a witness: “No, artists are not there to reform and convert. They are far too little for that. They must testify.”
  • From Rembrandt to Rauschenberg: Recently Acquired Prints. The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH (organizer) (September 17-November 26, 2000).
    Graphic Discontent: German Expressionism on Paper. The Cleveland Museum of Art (organizer) (January 14-May 27, 2018).
  • {{cite web|title=The War: Seen on the Slope at Cléry-sur-Somme|url=false|author=Otto Dix|year=1924|access-date=03 March 2024|publisher=Cleveland Museum of Art}}

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