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Heartfield England Years by Richard Carline
Richard Carline’s charming and amusing article about the John Heartfield England years. Heartfield begged authorities to be allowed to remain in England after the war. In a letter to the Czech Refugee Fund, he wrote it was essential to stay in England for “my health and my work.” He appeal was denied. Eventually, he returned to East Germany by way of Czechoslovakia to join his brother in East Berlin. He was promised a decent life. Instead, the GDR accused him of treason because of his stay in England. He narrowly avoided a trial, but was denied admission to the East German Akademie der Künste for six years. His health suffered. The dreams of a communist utopia that he and so many others shared in their youth became a nightmare of repression and totalitarianism.
WITH GRATITUDE TO THE ORIGINAL SOURCE: Joanna Drew (ed.), John Heartfield 1891-1968: photomontages at the Institue of Contemporary Arts, London SW1, 6 October-8 November 1969 (London: The Arts Council of Great Britain, 1969).