GHDI logo
German History in Documents and Images
return to system

Max Beckmann, Nude Dance, from the "Berlin Travels" Cycle (1922)
Max Beckmann’s (1884-1950) traumatic experiences in the medical corps during World War I led to a profound change in his art. “Berlin Journey” was one of several postwar print cycles that depicted a weary, disappointed, and disillusioned society. Many of the figures represented in the “Berlin Journey” drawings were prominent artists and intellectuals who had undergone significant wartime and postwar ideological transformations. Beckmann, who did not actively support any political group or party (and who rejected the label Expressionist), produced the majority of his print works during the years 1918-1923, a period that saw a boom in German art printmaking. In a 1921 article in the magazine Die Rheinlande, Siegfried Kracauer wrote: “There is no other painter in Germany today who experiences our troubled times as deeply and who has expressed this experience with such incomparable skill as Max Beckmann.”