Cabaret Voltaire, the birthplace of Dada, opened its doors on February 5, 1916. Hugo Ball, like many other artists and intellectuals, in the turmoil of the First World War found a safe place in the neutral Switzerland, in Zurich. Hugo Ball started with his surrealist Manifesto of Dada a movement characterized by absurd, denouncing of rules, opposition towards the ideals of art of the time, and a rebellion against the social conditions during the First World War. Besides Hugo Ball, the most famous representatives of this artistic movement are Emmy Hennings, Marcel Janko, Tristan Tzara, Rixhard Huelsenbeck, Hans Arp, and Sophie Taeuber-Arp.
Dada's influence is still seen today, and this is the reason the centennial anniversary of this movement is one of the most significant cultural and artistic anniversaries of 2016. Dada exists in visuals arts, poetry and literature, its influence surpassed national borders and continents, making itself promints in many countries in different ways, influenced by local cultural and political surroundings and artistic connections.
The contemporary art of today draws its roots from the first Avant-Garde movements, Dada being one of them. Avant-Garde art has a rich history and influence in the ex-Yugoslav region, artists from this region were a part of all relevant happenings on the art scene. For example, Dada's influence can be seen in the work of Dragan Aleksić (magazines "Dada Tank" and "Dada Jazz", published from 1922), whio was also in contact with Tristan Tzara, one of Dada's founders. Branko Ve Poljanski published "Dada Jok" in the same period.
The Gorgona group was based on the legacy of Dadaism, and the works by its members are the most representative legacy of this heritage. The exhibition at the Thalberg Gallery will give a retrospective look on the activities of the art group Gorgona, the most important and influential Neo-Avant-Garde group of the region, whose members were Julije Knifer, Josip Vaništa, Đuro Seder, Marijan Jevšovar, Ivan Kožarić, Miljenko Horvat, Dimitrije Bašičević Mangelos, Matko Meštrović, and Radoslav Putar. As the best representative of the Avant-Garde movement in this region after the Second World War, and the legacy of the first Avant-Garde and Dadism, the exhibiton „NEO DADA: GORGONA |Absurd Freedom“ will position this group on its rightful place - the very centre of the global art scene and in the same context with the most significant artistic phenomena active in the period.
A notable art historian Ješa Denegri is in charge for the exhibition concept. Denegri authored the most comprehensive monograph on the Gorgona group which will be published as part of a project by the Institute for the Research of the Avant-Garde and Marinko Sudac Collection.
Zurich will during this February, and the rest of the year, be filled with a myriad of programmes connected with the movement which originated in the heart of the town. Exhibitions on the Dada movement members and Dadaism are planned in the Swiss National Museum (Landesmuseum) - Dada Universal, in Kunsthaus Zurich - Dadaglobe Reconstructed, as well as in many other museums, galleries, and public spaces across the city. The full programme of events can be found on the Dada100Zürich2016 website.
With the „NEO DADA: GORGONA |Absurd Freedom“, the Marinko Sudac Collection and the Institute for the Research of Avant-Garde join the rich programme of activities connected to this important anniversary of Dade, on a very special place, it's place of birth, in Zürich.