Artist John Heartfield created this satirical photomontage, showing the metamorphosis from President Friedrich Ebert (caterpillar) to Paul von Hindenburg (pupa) to Adolf Hitler (death’s-head moth).
Born Helmut Herzfelde, the artist changed his name to John Heartfield to protest the strong anti-English hostility present in Germany during World War I. He and his brother Wieland Herzfelde became part of the Dada movement to protest the war, and what they felt were the absurdities of modern life and the injustices and inequalities of German society and government.
John Heartfield was critical of what he considered the Weimar government’s insufficient commitment to reform. He was an early and ferocious enemy of Hitler and the Nazi movement. His widely circulated anti-Hitler posters made him a target of the Nazis, and he fled from Germany when they took power in January of 1933.
John L. Loeb, Jr. is a tireless philanthropist and patron of culture, Ambassador to Denmark during the Reagan administration, and the founder of the George Washington Institute for Religious Freedom (GWIRF), whose mission is to promote awareness of the historic roots of religious liberty in America. GWIRF is the sponsor of Facing History's Give Bigotry No Sanction project.