Sunday, 9 March 2014

daytrip: maintauberfranken

Taking advantage of the spring weather, we took a short rumble down a portion of the Romantic Road (die Romantische Straße), the route of fairy tale castles, palaces and fotresses that criss-cross the borders of Bayern and Baden-Württemberg in the western reaches of Franconia to Upper-Bavaria.  Towards the end of our trip, we passed through the village of Creglingen on the Tauber river, nicely rendered in this landscape by the artist Carl Grossberg in 1926. We did not photograph this particular vista because of the afternoon sun, but I was really captured by the artist's modern, cartoonish style.
Afterwards, I researched a bit further, got a lesson in art-history and found more of Grossberg's works and discovered that the collection epitomizes the German New Objectivity movement (Neue Sachlichkeit, new matter-of-factness) that aimed to capture the practicality of form and function associated with civic involvement and political engagement of Germany's inter-war Weimar Republic and an off-shoot of the Bauhaus movement.
As opposed to Futurism or Expressionism, this impartial attitude emulated the perceived values of America's infatuation with work and progress and represented an inward-turning towards institutions and public life, and Grossberg did in fact produce many interesting schematics depicting industry.  I do, however, really enjoy his imaginative way of inserting sloths and monkeys into office-settings for effect and comment.