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Death for the Idea

Paul Klee

Death for the Idea

Paul Klee
  • Original Title: Der Tod für die Idee
  • Date: 1915
  • Style: Expressionism
  • Genre: symbolic painting
  • Media: lithography
  • Order Oil Painting
    reproduction

At the beginning of World War I, Klee felt distanced from the event and it affected him very little. However, after his two friends Marc and Macke both died in the conflict, the effects of the war began to take hold on his consciousness. He used art as an outlet for his distress, creating a series of lithographs of war scenes. In Death for the Idea, we see a body lying at the bottom of a series of lines and shapes, building up above him like a cityscape. Klee joined the war effort, but was spared battle, as he was employed instead as a clerk, as well as to paint camouflage on airplanes. He was also able to paint throughout the war and his work was included in many exhibits.

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