Ants (Ameisen), from "In the Shadows" ("Im Schatten")

Accession Number

Ants (Ameisen), from "In the Shadows" ("Im Schatten")

George Grosz

Artist Nationality
German (culture or style)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support
photolithograph on paper

14 in x 17 1/2 in (35.56 cm x 44.45 cm);14 in x 17 1/2 in (35.56 cm x 44.45 cm);18 1/8 in x 22 1/8 in (46.04 cm x 56.2 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Jean Paul Slusser

Label copy
March 28, 2009
In 1914 Grosz, like many of his generation, volunteered for service in World War I. The experience left a deep, dark impression. In 1918, he joined the Berlin Dada Movement, whose aesthetic reflected their militant opposition to the political and social forces that had caused the Great War. The Dadaists shared Grosz’s anti-establishment views, but whereas his compatriots were unable to offer an alternative other than total anarchy, Grosz applied himself to more constructive criticism of the status quo, calling on artists to “collaborate in the building of a new human community, the community of working people.” His satirical drawings were published in radical leftist journals, such as the widely circulated Workers’ Illustrated News, and his portfolios were simultaneously published in cheap editions for the working class and deluxe editions for the elite collector, the sales of which offset the cost of the mass-produced editions.

Subject matter
One of George Grosz's many works from the period after the First World War that explore the hardship of the poor and the working class in Germany's economic crisis, against a backdrop of a decaying industrial landscape.

Physical Description
A group of laborers, wearing hats and jackets, walks from viewer's right to left along a street littered with garbage. The two in the front carry shovels. In the background is an industrial landscape, dirty and in disrepair.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type
black and white print

Collection Area
Modern and Contemporary

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cityscapes (representations)
factories (structures)
men (male humans)
modern and contemporary art
transfer lithography

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& Author Notes

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