Cocottes, Garçonnes, and Cowboys: Gender and Figuration in the Work of George Grosz, Karl Hubbuch, and Hanna Nagel, 1915-1935
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CitationWendel, Joanna. 2020. Cocottes, Garçonnes, and Cowboys: Gender and Figuration in the Work of George Grosz, Karl Hubbuch, and Hanna Nagel, 1915-1935. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard University, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences.
AbstractThis project considers how anxiety provoked by shifting gender norms between World War I and the end of the Weimar period operates in the work of George Grosz, Karl Hubbuch, and Hanna Nagel. These artists worked in a figurative mode that locates their work within the broad category of Neue Sachlichkeit, part of a pan-European “return to order.” During this period, the so-called “new woman” became increasingly active and visible in public life, prompting anxious responses from men whose identities had been fundamentally shaken by the war and its aftermath. The work of Grosz, Hubbuch, and Nagel therefore reflects the extent to which changing gender roles contributed to a sense of individual and interpersonal crisis for both women and men.
Grosz’s work reflects the artist’s sense of traumatized masculinity by engaging with a mythical American West, the figure of the rationalized automaton, and finally with an authoritative Old Master tradition. Hubbuch’s work shifts from a stereotyped image of women as embodiments of urban vice towards a more nuanced attempt to represent the multiplicity of the new woman. Nagel’s work reflects her struggle to construct and inhabit the emerging persona of the professional female artist, as well as her disillusionment when the emancipatory promise of the new woman failed to materialize.
Citable link to this pagehttps://nrs.harvard.edu/URN-3:HUL.INSTREPOS:37365519
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