In early February 1916 an artist’s pub by the telling name of Cabaret Voltaire saw the light of day in Zurich. It is here that men and women like Hugo Ball, Emmy Hennings, Tristan Tzara, Sophie Taeuber, Richard Huelsenbeck, Hans Arp, and others founded Dada. The Cabaret Voltaire became a melting pot of nationalities, artistic styles, and genres. The movement soon spread across the city and beyond, and by the early 1920s Dada had created a network that spanned the world. The movement was not only ultramodern, provocative, and imaginative, it revoked the boundaries between quotidian life and art. Typical of this attitude were the so-called Dada soirees held in Zurich. Describing the eighth and so far largest event in the Kaufleuten in Zurich, Tristan Tzara wrote in 1919: “1,500 people at boiling point filled the hall.” This year’s hundredth Dada anniversary ends with the crowning event of the Zurich Dada Symposium on 8 July 2016, again in the Kaufleuten. The symposium focuses on Dada’s transdisciplinarity and addresses the question of the significance of the “Ur-movement of avant-garde” (Juri Steiner) today. Alongside young Dada exegetes, international artists and thinkers with leanings towards Dada are invited to Zurich to present and discuss their views, experiences and knowledge about this mesmerizing movement. The event climaxes in a party that will hopefully connect with the legendary Dada soirees of the past.
With a project grant of CHF 20 000 the Foundation Board supports the organization of the symposium, thus expressing its acknowledgement for the work of Verein dada 100 Zurich 2016 and its contribution to the involvement with a significant art movement of the early twentieth century.