In examining Dada in the Low Countries, Hubert van den Berg is faced with a complex situation that as much critiqued as embraced Dada. Largely an individual affair, and lacking the community "center" of Dada in Zurich, Berlin and the other Dada "capitals," van den Berg focuses equally on Dada's reception and on its exercise. Primarily a case of selective appropriation, Dada in the Low Countries nevertheless possessed an international reach, achieved in the relationships it posed between Dada and the Post-World War I Constructivist International and De Stijl. For the author, Dada in Belgium and the Netherlands is less a case of its "story" than of specific cases of its "use." The involvement of Clement Pansaers, Paul van Ostaijen, Theo van Doesburg, and German artist Kurt Schwitters, figure prominently in the historical mapping of van den Berg's complex and elusive subject.
"This is a world premiere in the field of scholarly publishing; an exhaustive compilation in an encyclopedic format of all that this artistic, literary, political, sociological and philosophic movement has covered... To my knowledge, no project of such magnitude has ever been attempted anywhere."
-- Michel Sanouillet, Dean Emeritus, University of Nice, France; founder and first president of the International Association for the Study of Dada and Surrealism (November 2002)
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