Hans Richter 1888-1976


Hans Richter (1888-1976) was a German painter, graphic artist, avant-gardist, film-experimenter and producer. He was responsible for pioneering several major areas of twentieth-century art, emerging as a key component in the Dada movement. His work had a major influence on American art following World War II. His early style is Expressionist and shows the influence of Kandinsky and Hans Arp. He emerged as part of the Constructivist Movement and further developed as an Abstract and Dada artist after he moved to the United States.


Born in Berlin, he studied at the Academy of Art in Berlin, the Academy of Aty in Weimar and for a small period of time in Paris. By 1913 Richter had emerged himself within the mainstream of expressionist circles. By 1918 his work became less expressionistic and instead gave way to a more abstract style in which any traces of naturalism were almost completely lost. In 1916, in Zurich, Richter receieved his first solo show at the Galerie Hans Goltz in Munich. He also contributed to two group shows in Zurich; Dada and Die Neue Kunst: Dada in 1917 and 1918 at the Galerie Corray and the Salon Wolfsburg. Although he was associated with the Berlin Dada group, his interests quickly moved int he direction of Interational Constructivism. The 20s and 30s was a time of intense activity for Richter as a filmaker. In 1941 Richter moved to the USA and became a citizen in 1951. When he arrived in America he joined the American Abstract group and was exhibited in Maitres de l'Art Abstrait at the Helena Rubenstein Gallery. his second solo show was held at the Art of This Century gallery in New York in 1946, an organisation founded by Peggy Guggenheim which Richter would be made president of two years later. His work Dreams That Money Can Buy 1946 -1948 was made during these years in collaboration with key Dada and Surrealist artists, Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Fernand Leger, Man Ray and Alexander Calder.


Richter has been awarded at the 1948 Venice Bienalle and at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1971. A major retrospective of his work was held at the Akademie der Kunst in Nerlin in 1982, six years after his death. Today, Richter's work can be found all over the world, in the collections of the National gallery in Berlin, Museum 20 Jahrunderts in Vienna, Galeria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna in Rome, Musee National d'Arte Moderne in Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York amongst many others.