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Emil Tidemand was the most important figure in establishing art criti-cism as a literary genre in Norway. Nevertheless, his importance has been underestimated in the art his-torical literature, where he has been dismissed as a layman critic whose understanding of art was limited. This criticism is the result of a modernist understanding of art, which was unable to grasp the qualities of Tidemand’s critical writings. This is because he operates with a concept of art’s moral and social signifi-cance, an understanding partly rejected by modernist aesthetics. This article brings out aspects of Emil Tidemand’s critical praxis that will show him as a far more progressive and interesting critic than previously known.
The Norwegian-Swedish artist Hannah Ryggen (1894–1970) made the tapestry Liselotte Hermann Beheaded in 1938. The tapestry is an example of the icono-graphy of double exposure where the renaissance motif Madonna of the Rose Bower and the portrait of the German Communist Liselotte Hermann are superimposed on each other to create a critical com-mentary to the Third Reich’s execu-tion of the young mother. This double exposure places Ryggen in a modernist political tradition for alluding Christian motifs.
This article focuses on one of the major works by the German Expressionist painter August Macke, entitled Rokoko (1912).
The painting stands somewhat out in Macke’s oeuvre, and has an inte-resting iconography and a puzzling title.
The author argues that it should be seen in connection with an overall archaistic trend in European modernism at the turn of the century. The article also emphasizes the importance of Wassily Kandinskji and Robert Delaunay to Macke.
Rokoko was irst exhibited at the Sonderbund in Cologne in 1912. In 2010 Rokoko was purcha-sed by the Savings Bank Foundation DNBNOR and is currently being deposited at the National Museum of Art in Oslo.