John Heartfield was a leader in photomontage. Photomontage is taking already preexisting photos and cutting them together to make a piece that is used to send a message. During the two World Wars Heartfield worked in both Germany and Czechoslovakia. Heartfields images were so strong that they were able to sway the political view of citizens and during World War II they were used as ways to communicate. Each photomontage had messages within them to keep the people educated about what was happening around them.

During Hitler’s reign, Heartfield’s work got more aggressive. Heartfield used gruesome images to display the true nature of the nations leader at the time. One of his most popular pieces portraying this shows an Xray of Hitler and within the skeleton are piles of gold. This message was used to show that Hitler was a dirty politician who was easily bought with money. Heartfield achieved this by using preexisting and already popular photos of Hitler, then he would cut up the photos and rearrange them to get his message out.

I think that what John Heartfield did was nothing but amazing. He was able to use his art to sway political view and it was so great that people started using them to communicate. Such an interesting way to use photomontage during a time of crisis. This speaks volumes of his work and shows how important art is in a society.


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