(German, 1890 – 1965)
German art historian, critic, collagist and photographer who not only defined the European avant-garde between the two Wolrd Wars, but who – as both critic and artist – influenced the collective trends seen in much photo-based work today.
Called the “Nero of Criticism” by friends – notably Willi Baumeister, George Grosz, László Moholy-Nagy and Kurt Schwitters – Roh is well known for his landmark publication, Post-Expressionism–Magic Realism: Problems of Recent European Painting, an ambitious attempt to codify the art historical paradign of his mentor, Heinrich Wölfflin, with a complete roll-call of the new objective painters. Roh coined the term “magic realism” to emphasize the return of these painters to realism after a decade or more of abstraction in art. “Tih the word ‘magic’ as opposed to ‘mystic’, I wish to indicate that the nystery does not descend to the represented world, but rather hides and palpitates behind it…” Because objects had been lost to abstraction and were now being made newly available to the sense of the beholder.
PAST EXHIBITIONS AT UBU GALLERY
FIAC | October 23 – 26, 2014
Metamorphosis Victorianus: Modern Collage, Victorian Engravings & Nostalgia | October 30, 2009 – January 30, 2010
Franz Roh: Photography & Collage from the 1930s | September 14 – December 22, 2006
Neue Sachlichkeit: “New Objectivity” in Weimar Germany | September 21 – December 18, 2004
Fotomontage: European & Russian Collage, 1920 – 1950 | January 10 – February 14, 1998