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or da·da  (dä′dä)
A European artistic and literary movement (1916-1923) that flouted conventional aesthetic and cultural values by producing works marked by nonsense, travesty, and incongruity.

[French dada, hobbyhorse, Dada, of baby-talk origin.]

Da′da·ism n.
Da′da·ist adj. & n.
Da′da·is′tic adj.


(ˈdɑːdɑː) or


(Art Movements) a nihilistic artistic movement of the early 20th century in W Europe and the US, founded on principles of irrationality, incongruity, and irreverence towards accepted aesthetic criteria
[C20: from French, from a children's word for hobbyhorse, the name being arbitrarily chosen]
ˈDadaist n, adj
ˌDadaˈistic adj
ˌDadaˈistically adv


(ˈdɑ dɑ)

a movement in early 20th-century art and literature whose exponents challenged established canons of art, thought, and morality through nihilist works and outrageous behavior.
[1915–20; < French: hobby horse, childish reduplication of da giddyap]
da′da•ism, n.
da′da•ist, n., adj.
da`da•is′tic, adj.
da`da•is′ti•cal•ly, adv.


(c. 1915–23) An art movement originating in Zurich 1915, Dada (the name chosen at random) rejected accepted aesthetic values and advocated an irrational form of non-art or anti-art. Leading figures included the poet Tristan Tzara and the sculptor Jean Arp.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Dada - an informal term for a fatherdada - an informal term for a father; probably derived from baby talk
begetter, father, male parent - a male parent (also used as a term of address to your father); "his father was born in Atlanta"
2.dada - a nihilistic art movement (especially in painting) that flourished in Europe early in the 20th century; based on irrationality and negation of the accepted laws of beauty
art movement, artistic movement - a group of artists who agree on general principles


A. Ndada m, dadaísmo m
B. ADJdadaísta


n (Art) → Dada m
References in periodicals archive ?
In decorating her body with bizarre objects, shaving and painting her head, and cross-dressing, the Baroness became "the living Dada." This embodiment, Gammel argues, marks the Baroness's art as different than that of male Dadaists. Walking the streets bedecked in vegetables, with tomato cans for a bra, the Baroness simultaneously drew male attention and parodied it, representing the commodified female object and rejecting that role.
Raoul Hausmann (1886-1971) was perhaps the most talented of the German-speaking Dadaists, being photomontagist, painter, photographer, dancer, and inventor of the 'optophone' (a device intended to convert light into sound; patented in 1935) as well as a prolific writer and theorist.
In the art world, the tradition of performance art can be traced back to the Futurists, Dadaists, and Surrealists, who often staged humorous or provocative events to communicate their ideas.
In his lifetime they attracted Dadaists and Surrealists--though Roussel was unaware of their aesthetics-and there's a superficial resemblance between some of them and the novels of Ronald Firbank written at the same time, but they more closely resemble the works of his followers, like Mathews's early novels, Kenneth Koch's novel The Red Robins and his narrative poems, and Sorrentino's recent novels.
After 1922, however, Dada faded and many Dadaists grew interested in Surrealism.
Tales of nihilistic anti-art perverts obsessed with shock and obscenity above meaning and beauty are entertaining enough--though I pity the desiccated sensibilities of someone who sees only destructive, violent tendencies in the often hilariously absurd antics of dadaists and noise musicians.
He describes the foundations of classical Greek cynicism and illustrates the varied faces of the cynic phenomenon in such disparate characters as Machiavelli, Nietzsche, Diogenes, the Dadaists, George Bataille and the creators of South Park.
This equation of the Dadaist aesthetic to the Nazis' world order is not exact, of course - the Dadaists opposed organized ideals, and the Nazis were the epitome of organization.
Fargue's works have been linked with the Dadaists (for their juxtaposition of images), the Cubists (for their dislocation and deformation of words), and the Surrealists (for their fascination with dreams).
In the tradition of the Dadaists, Surrealists and others who have manipulated images, I photocopied a reproduction of Keith and distributed it to the students in my High School Drawing Workshop at the museum.
And Part IV consists of post-war reactions to visual Expressionism by leading members of the Bauhaus, Dadaists, art critics of the early Weimar years, Nazi art critics of the 1930s and left-wing participants in the Expressionismus-Debatte that took place in Moscow in the 1930s.
It was later championed by the Surrealists and Dadaists in the 1920s, who recognized in Ubu roi the first absurdist drama.