Das ist das Heil, das sie bringen! (That is the salvation, that they bring)

Place Europe: Germany
Accession Number ARTV09077
Collection type Art
Measurement Overall: 63.9 x 48 cm
Object type Poster
Physical description photogravure on paper
Maker Heartfield, John
Heartfield Archive and GDR Government
Place made Germany: Saxony-Anhalt, Saxony, Dresden
Date made 1957
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945
Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)

Item copyright: Unlicensed copyright


A skeleton hand with bomber planes issuing from its five fingers, raised imposingly over the destroyed city with bodies of dead children in the foreground. This work was horribly prophetic when first published during the Spanish civil war in 1938. Later on, during the Allied bombings of German cities Heartfield reissued it under the heading of 'The Benefit Accomplished by Air Raids from the Point of View of Racial Selection and Social Hygiene', with a cynical clipping from a current number of the 'Berlin Journal for Biology and Race Research': 'The densely populated sections of cities suffer most acutely in air raids. Since these areas are inhabited for the most part by the ragged proletariat, society will thus be rid of these elements. One ton bombs not only cause death but also very frequently produce madness. People with weak nerves cannot stand such shocks. That makes it possible for us to find out who the neurotics are. Then the only thing that remains is to sterilize such people. Thereby the purity of the race is guaranteed.'