At the close of Microphone Check's onstage conversation with the producer and DJ Mannie Fresh, he took to the decks to demonstrate what he meant. (You’re gonna want to hear Mannie bounce Hall & Oates, trust me.)
What happened to works of art under the Nazis is still very much in the news. One piece of that history is the official Nazi response to Modern Art. They called it degenerate, and put on a number of exhibits to demonstrate how terrible it was. A show at New York’s Neue Galerie is the first major American exhibit since 1991 to deal with this subject. And Fresh Air’s classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz was there to see it:
One of the most unsettling rooms in an important art exhibit at New York’s Neue Galerie is a room in which numerous empty frames are hanging, with guesses about which paintings might have been in them. The paintings themselves were all lost or destroyed by the Nazis. This is part of a show called “Degenerate Art: The Attack on Modern Art in Nazi Germany, 1937.” Encouraged by Hitler, most Nazis (Goebbels was the rare exception) considered everything but the most hide-bound, traditionally realistic paintings and sculptures to be “degenerate,” a threat to the Aryan ideals of German culture. To bring this home, there was a series of “exhibitions of shame,” designed to teach the German public to despise Modernist art. This culminated in a major show in Munich in 1937, which later toured Germany and Austria. The public crowded to see it. That same summer in Munich, a counter exhibit, called “The Great German Art Exhibition,” including at least one work owned by Hitler, showed what the Nazis thought art should be. The Neue Galerie includes some 80 works from both of these landmark shows.
Image courtesy of the Neue Galerie