Theaterby Hans Baluschek
Lady holding her face with a lamp overhead.The image that runs through ones mind-at least the mate mind at any hearing the title A Harems Night brings up far more lascivi-ous ones than does this spectacularly sparse Baluschek creation for the touring theatrical piece playing at the Casino Theater, As opposed to com-pliant concubines prancing about in peek-a-boo erotica, we see a partially denuded woman lost in abject despair and left to ponder her fate in the naked glare of a single suspended lamp. Its a bit tragic that the plot of Harems Night was not the artistic equal of this unforgettable poster: the image remains, nary a word of dialogue does. After studying at the Berlin Academy, artist and graphic designer Baluschek displayed his works at both the 1898 German Poster Exhibition and the Secessionist exhibit of the following year. In 1920, he joined the Social Democratic party, and from then until 1931, he contributed satirical cartoons to the Partys humor magazine, The True Jacob. In 1933, during the first year of the Nazi regime, he was forced to give up his duties, leaving one to speculate over the influence the illustrator commanded in the public sphere.