Stephanie Barron. "Degenerate Art"

John McDonald Moore Memorial Lecture Mon 18 Apr 2005 6.30PM-8.30PM The New School, Theresa Lang Community and Student Center
55 West 13th Street, 2nd Floor
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The third John McDonald Moore Memorial Lecture is delivered by Stephanie Barron, Senior Curator of Modern Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Named after one of the university's most influential art history teachers, this six-part lecture series honors John McDonald Moore's contribution to the university's intellectual life. Moore taught art history and criticism at The New School from 1968 until his death in 1999. Not unlike the speakers in this series—Michael Brenson, Linda Nochlin, and now Stephanie Barron—Moore brought to his students the vision of an artist who is also a scholar, and his classes were famously popular. His students, family, and friends established this lecture series in 2000.

The infamous 1937 Degenerate Art show in Nazi Germany was the culmination of the fascist movement against modern art. The show had consequences that lasted well beyond the failure of the Third Reich in 1945. Contemporary art practices in Germany after the war were haunted by the specters of racism, nationalism, internationalism, communism, Expressionism, and abstraction. The polemics and the intransigence surrounding this discussion only increased during the Cold War, and it is only possible to begin to reexamine these issues in a post-Wall era. In the years following the war in a divided Germany, discussions revealed the diverse aspirations for the power and role of art in a political society. With an understanding of the circumstances that led to the Degenerate Art show and an examination of its purpose and results, we can begin to frame questions about German art after 1945.