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Tappan Talks

Thursday, September 4, 2014
12:00 AM
180 Tappan hall

History of Art Graduate students give 20-minute presentations followed by discussion.

Today: Kristin Schroeder on Sachlichkeit and Sabotage: Fashionable Utility in Lotte Laserstein's Tennis Player (1929)

My Tappan Talk explores the sartorial claim to utility in the portrait, Tennis Player (1929) by the Weimar-era painter Lotte Lasertein (1898-1993). Saturating fashion discourse in the Weimar Republic were the terms Sachlichkeit (sobriety) and Zweckmäßigkeit (utility). Tennis Player depicts the icon of Weimar modernity – the New Woman – looking sportlich and sachlich in her natural milieu. The work conveys the contradictory symbolic values of a functional garment under the regime of Sachlichkeit during the Weimar Republic. In Tennis Player, Laserstein explores Sachlichkeit’s status as a fashionable anti-fashion.

Kristin Schroeder