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Definition: Arp, Jean (Hans) from Philip's Encyclopedia

Alsatian sculptor, painter and poet. During World War 1, he founded the Zurich Dada movement with the Romanian artists Tristan Tzara, Marcel Janco, and others. He worked briefly with the Blaue Reiter group, and in the 1920s joined the surrealism movement. His sculpture spans the divide between Dada humour and the purity of non-iconic abstract art. Navel Shirt and Head (1926) and Human Concretion (1935) are typical.


Summary Article: Arp, Hans (or Jean) from The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide

French abstract painter, sculptor, and poet. He was one of the founders of the Dada movement in 1916, and was later associated with the Surrealists. Using chance and automatism, Arp developed an abstract sculpture whose sensuous shapes suggest organic forms. In many of his works, in particular his early collages, he collaborated with his wife Sophie Taeuber-Arp (1889–1943).

From 1916 to 1919 Arp took a leading role in Dada activities in Zürich, Switzerland. He started making wood reliefs, sometimes painted, with simple organic forms. In 1925 he exhibited with the surrealists, but he was also in contact with abstract artists. From 1930 onwards he also made free-standing sculpture in stone, bronze, and wood.

Arp was born in Strasbourg, but moved to Zürich during World War I. In 1915 he made a series of abstract geometric collages in coloured paper, papiers déchirés. In 1928, in collaboration with his wife and Theo van Doesburg (1883–1931), he made abstract decorations for the Café Aubette, Strasbourg, now destroyed.

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