The Lecture (also known as Anti-Semite)
Medium: Ink and watercolour on paper
Dimensions: 55 x 45 cm
Inscription: signed with ink (lower right) 'Grosz', titled with pencil (lower right) 'Letter to an Anti-Semite'
Georg Ehrenfried Gross was born in Berlin in 1893, studying at the Dresden Academy (1909-11), Berlin’s School of Arts and Crafts (1912-14) and the Atelier Colarossi, Paris (1913). He served twice during the First World War: having enlisted in 1914, he was discharged on medical grounds, rejoining in 1917 and again being discharged as unfit. In 1916 he changed his name to George Grosz to indicate his admiration for American life and culture and from 1917-20 he was a prominent member of the German anti-Bourgeois Dada movement.
Post-war Grosz channeled his fierce anti-militarism into satirical, politically excoriating works, and was repeatedly prosecuted on the grounds of obscenity and blasphemy. In 1933, only days before Hitler’s accession to the Chancellorship, he moved to New York to avoid persecution. He was stripped of his German citizenship, some of his books and portfolios were destroyed and his work was later included in the infamous 1937 ‘Degenerate Art’ exhibition.
Grosz became a naturalised American citizen in 1938, but returned to post-war Berlin in 1959, where he died shortly afterwards.
Born: 1893 Berlin, Germany
Died: 1959 Berlin, Gemany