Berlin: Neuer Deutscher Verlag - Willi Münzenberg, 1929. First printing. Softcover. All issue folios (15 x 11") with photo-illustrated covers and brown lettering on covers, some with photomontages by John Heartfield. All issues with photogravure illustrations and up to and including volume XI, No. 52, 1930, with A-I-Z header in stylized Gothic German lettering with German text, protected by modern mylar. This Heartfield collection of acrid as much as to the point montages and text by John Heartfield are unique in their drastic description of society just as much as many of them are artistic masterpieces.
After the move to Prague in 1933 the masthead changed. Instead of the brown lettering of A-I-Z, the covers feature AIZ in reverse white with shadows of the letters in brown reflecting a modernist typography. The issues are printed in the same sepia-toned fashion until 1934 when they changed to a red-toned gravure. The edition was reduced from a weekly run of 500,000 to 12,000 copies per issue and the page numbers were reduced. A final change took place in 1937, renaming the AIZ to be published as VI Die Volks-Illustrierte, issue of April 14, 1937 in our collection.
The Heartfield photomontages in our descriptions have been verified and, for the most part, rely on the descriptive text as put forth in David Evans' 1992 publication "AIZ John Heartfield Arbeiter-Illustrierte Zeitung Volks Illustrierte 1930-38," edited by Anna Lundgren, published by Kent Fine Art, Inc.
1. A-I-Z Jahrgang VIII Nr. 44, 1929. Berlin. Neuer Deutscher Verlag - Willi Münzenberg. Folio (15 x 11'). pages 1-20, missing pp. 3-6 and 15-18. Original photo-illustrated wraps with brown lettering on cover, protected by modern mylar. Cover photograph by Armstrong Roberts-Mauritius. This issue contains two photomontages by John Heartfield relating to Kurt Tucholsky's book "Deutschland, Deutschland über alles," the cover of Tucholsky's publication (4 3/4 x 3 1/3") and "Das Parlament" (8 x 9 5/8"), rendered in sepia-toned photogravure. The latter is with Tucholsky's poem "Das Parlament," announced as a sample from the recently published book by Neuer Deutscher Verlag. The issue also contains a photo-report on Swabian peasants, a puzzle and humor page, two short short stories and a photo-illustrated page about worker's sports. The back cover is a photo-illustrated page with news from around the world with captions in German and Esperanto. Imprint at bottom refers to offices in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Russia and Holland. Printer Carl Sabo, Berlin. Text in German, Esperanto on back cover. Some light fraying at foredge of page 9/10. Very good condition. Not listed in Evans.
2. A-I-Z Jahrgang IX Nr. 10, 1930. Berlin. Folio (15 x 11"). Pages 183-198, missing covers, pages 187/88 and 193/94. Photo-illustrated wraps. Contains one full page photomontage by Heartfield: "Zwangslieferantin von Menschenmaterial! Nur Mut! Der Staat braucht Arbeitslose und Soldaten!" (Forced supplier of human material! Take courage! The state needs unemployed workers and soldiers!); signature in plate. With photo-illustrated contributions on French prisons, striking British personalities with drawings by Georg Ledebour, the exploitation of women entitled "From Peon to Fighter," puzzles, announcements and a short story by Jaroslav Hasek. Page 198 with photo-illustrated contribution on physical culture. Photo-illustrations in photogravure. Some light fraying of three pages at foredge. Very good condition. Evans, page 46.
3. A-I-Z Jahrgang IX Nr. 28, 1930. Berlin. Folio (15 x 11"). Pages 543-558, missing covers. Wraps with Heartfield photomontage on cover, protected by modern mylar. Page 543 features a full page Heartfield photomontage: Mac Donald - Socialism (Macdonald - Sozialismus). The subtitle implies "I really cannot remain inactive while capitalism is being threatened with the loss of another sixth of the world." Contains photo-illustrated report on India, a short mystery by Leonid Borrisow, "Pax Brittanica," subtitled "how England brings peace," with photographs and reproduction of artwork, a photo-illustrated contribution "How India Fights Imperialism, including England's war preparations on the North-Western Frontier against the Soviet-Union, the obligatory puzzle and satyrical pages and an additional photo-illustrated page on imperialist terror in India. Contain imprint of Neuer Deutscher Verlag, Willi Münzenberg, listing offices in Berlin, Austria and Switzerland. Photogravure by Carl Sabo, Berlin. With light fraying of foredge of four pages. Very good condition. Evans, page 52.
4. A-I-Z Jahrgang IX Nr. 31, 1930. Berlin. 18pp., missing pp. 609-612. Page 603 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Solar Eclipse Over The "Liberated" Rhine", referencing the treaty of Versailles signed in 1919 specifying the the Rhineland was to be a demilitarized zone occupied by the Allied troops for fifteen years. An updated version of the montage appeared in 1962 in Herzfelde's John Heartfield Leben und Werk )p.236). Page six of our issue contains a second Heartfield photomontage (6 x 9 3/8"): Spielerei Eines Pazifistischen Engels, subtitles Dr. Rudi Breitscheid: "Nun schießt mal!" (Shenanigan of a pacifistic angel. Subtitle Dr. Rudi Breitscheid: "Go ahead, shoot!" Page 613 with a 7 x 7 3/4 cutout missing. Some fraying along foredge of page with second Heartfield photomontage, not affecting image. Evans, page 54.
5. A-I-Z Jahrgang IX Nr. 42, 1930. Berlin. 18pp., missing pages 827-834. Page 823 with a full page photomontage by Heartfield: Das tote Parlament. Subtitled "Das blieb vom Jahre 1848 übrig! So sieht der Reichstag aus, der am 13. Oktober eröffnet wird. (The dead parliament. That's all that's left from 1848! That's how the Reichstage looks that will be opened on October 13. A play on the first German parliament from 1848, and article 48 of the Weimar Constitution allowing the Reich President to suspend all fundamental rights of the citizens temporarily. This article was later invoked by Hindenburg after Hitlers success in the September election. Evans, page 60.
6. A-I-Z Jahrgang IX Nr. 52, 1930. Berlin. 18pp., missing pages 26/27. Page 1023 with a full page photomontage by Heartfield: Ein neues Jahr!... (Printed in handwriting). A New Year! A year like all the others? No!! That must not be! So that from misery and pain the new world arises: Strike, proletarian!" Arranged in the form of a poem the image show a blacksmith at work alluding to the final verse of the Communist anthem, the "Internationale." Contains photo-illustrated article on the dancer Mata-Hari. Light wear along edges. Evans, page 64.
7. A-I-Z Jahrgang X Nr. 13, 1931. 18pp. Page 253 with full page photomontage by Heartfield: "One must have special disposition toward suicide to forget that Social Democracy was needed very urgently in the period of Spartacism and not to bear in mind that perhaps one day it will be needed even more urgently." (Theodor Wolff, Berlin Tageblatt, February 15, 1931). The corpse in the picture is that of Karl Liebknecht (1871-1919), leader of the Spartacist uprising. He and Rosa Luxemburg were captured by the Freikorps at the Eden Hotel in Berlin. The quotations disbursed around Liebknecht are taken from Vorwärts, a Social Democratic Newspaper. (Evans). Leaf 251/52 with seven inch closed horizontal tear, no loss of text or imagery. Some light fraying and chipping along edges. Evans, page 66.
8. A-I-Z Jahrgang X Nr. 24, 1931. 18pp. Page 477 with full page photomontage by Heartfield: Zum Kriesen-Parteitag der SPD. (On the Occasion of the Crisis Party Conference of the SPD). A tiger's head mounted onto the face of the head of the Woodworkers Union Fritz Tranow. Some of the subtext displayed reads: The veterinarians of Leipzig: "Of course we will break out the teeth of the tiger, but first of all we must nurse him back to health and feed him." This page with some light fraying at foredge, not affecting image. Page 479 with 9 x 9 inch cutout at top of leaf. Some light fraying along edges. Evans, page 68.
9. A-I-Z Jahrgang X Nr. 26, 1931. 18pp. Special issue. Page 517 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Weather black, or white - in struggle united! We know only one race, we all know only one enemy - the exploiting class. This was Heartfield's contribution to a special issue called "Leben und Kampf der Schwarzen Rasse" (Life and struggle of the black race). Contains text of Nigger Jim by Weber which was set to music by Hans Eisler. Page 519 with 11 1/2 x 7 1/2" cutout. Heartfield page with light fraying at foredge, not affecting image. Evans, page 70.
10. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 26, 1932. 22pp. Page 603 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Wer Regiert in Deutschland? (Who Governs Germany). The image, not found in David Evans catalog, depicts an army boot with spores, an army helmet put over its top, standing on a map of the German Reich. Additional quotes from Reich Chancellor von Papen and Secretary of the Interior Freiherr von Gayl printed to bottom margin. Von Papen practically yearning for a German monarchy in the heart of Europe while von Gayl leaves no doubt that he will do everything in his power to uphold order, and, "We have to bear the public labeling of being reactionary with dignity and humor." Page 612 contains 2 1/2 x 3" reproduction of Heartfield' photomontage of the hyena with top hat. Contains photo-illustrated article on Marxism with title page of the Communist Manifesto placed over the lower parts of portrait photographs of Marc and Engels. Some fraying and light staining along foredge of centerfold. Not listed in Evans.
11. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 28, 1932. 22pp. Page 651 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Praktisches Christentum (Practical Christianity). Rendered on the occasion of the Devaheim trial, a court case involving embezzlement in a Lutheran children's home. Page 657 with cutout, page 663 with five inch closed horizontal tear at middle from foredge. Very light wear along edges. Evans, page 78.
12. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 29, 1932. 22pp. Page 675 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Adolf, Der Übermensch: Schluckt Gold und redet Blech (Adolf, The Superman: Swallows gold and spouts rubbish). Contains photo-illustrated article on money sources for the Hitler army and "A Murder Chronicle of Fascism" listing workers murdered by Fascists in 1930, 1931 and 1932 showing an upward trend. Evans, page 80.
13. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 30, 1932. 22pp. Front cover with Heartfield photomontage: Die Rote Einheit macht euch frei! Wählt Liste 3 (Red unity liberates you! Vote list 3). Looking forward to the Reichstag elections on July 31, 1932. The cover shows the Communist symbol for the United Front, an attempt to unite the Communist and Social Democrat parties. Shows symbols of both parties on armbands. Contains various articles on election issues and the Italian model of the Nazi terror. Evans, page 82.
14. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr 34, 1932. 22pp. With a one leaf insert of ads entitled AIZ Business and Home. Page 795 with full page Heartfield photomontage: S. M. Adolf. Ich führe Euch herrlichen Pleiten entgegen (His Majesty Adolf. I lead you toward splendid bankruptcies!). The image conflates portraits of Hitler and Kaiser Wilhelm altering a statement of the emperor during World War I (I lead you toward splendid times). Contains satirical sketch by George Groß. Evans, page 84.
15. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 35, 1932. 22pp. Page 819 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Wollt ihr wieder fallen, damit die Aktien steigen?! (Do you want to fall again, so that shares rise?!) Montage made an issue dedicated to the delegates of the Communist-sponsored antiwar conference in Amsterdam. Includes a full page, layered drawing by Fuck: Recipe for the elimination of unemployment... and finally into the mass grave to become profit fertilizer. Pages 839 and back cover detached, loosely laid in. Evans, page 86.
16. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 44, 1932. 28pp. Page 1035 with full page Heartfield photomontage: 15 Jahre Sowjet-Union. Wir schwören:"In der Stunde der Gefahr lassen wir unser sozialistisches Vaterland nicht im Stich" (15 Years Soviet Union. We swear: In the hour of danger we do not abandon our socialist fatherland). An array of articles lauding the work with the Soviet youth, ownership of factories by the workers, Soviet exports, etc. The back cover features a photograph of a militia headlined "Other constitutions die – the Soviet-Constitution lives! Evans, page 96.
17. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr. 46, 1932. 22pp. Page 1091 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Aufrüstung tut not! (Armament is necessary! Yes, Yes, the profit from our bones will come to and end some day. Don't worry, supplies will be taken care of). Article on housing, men in the marine, etc. Page 1099 with six inch closed tear from foredge inward. Some light fraying at foredge. Evans, page 100.
18. A-I-Z Jahrgang XI Nr.52, 1932. 22pp. Page 1227 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Kleiner SA-Mann, was nun? (Little SA man, what now? Subtext: Poor Hitler man, little Hitler man, you would also like to go on vacation, like the top people, who so enjoy getting into each other's blond hair...) Very light fraying along foredge. Includes 4 3/8 x 5 5/8" depiction of Heartfield dustjacket for the book "15 Eiserne Schritte." Evans, page 108.
19. NEW DESIGN AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 7, 1934. 14pp. This is the first issue in our collection with a changed masthead. Instead of the brown lettering in A-I-Z, this cover features AIZ in reverse white with shadows of the letters in brown, but is printed in the same sepia-toned fashion as previously. Heartfield had moved to Prague in 1933. The back cover of the issue features a full page Heartfield photomontage: Ihre Angst nimmt zu Ihr Terror nimmt zu. (Their fear increases Their terror increases). Relating to Rudolf Diehlt's defection from the Social Democrats to the Nazis in 1933. He founded and was the first leader of the Gestapo. Some fraying along foredge of some pages. Evans, page 188.
20. AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 11, 1934. 14pp. Back cover with full page photomontage by Heartfield: Der Unterschied. Wer die Verfassung schützt, die der Reichskanzler beschworen hat wird geköpft. Wer die Verfassung schützt, die der Bundeskanzler beschworen hat wird gehängt. (those who protect the constitution the Reich Chancellor has sworn to uphold, will be beheaded, those who protect the constitution the chancellor of the Republic has sworn to uphold will be handed. Evans, page 196.
21. AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 13, 1934. 14pp. Full page Heartfield photomontage on page 195: "O, du mein humanes Österreich" Je größer das Kaliber, umso größer die Humanität (Oh my humane Austria. The greater the caliber, the greater the humanity). Baby-Ammunition and the names Dollfuss and Fey (chancellor and vice-chancellor of Austria) are inscribed on the shells. Evans, page 200.
22. AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 17, 1934. 14pp. Cover with photomontage by Heartfield. Erster Mai (First of May). Issue dedicated to worker's day. Contains full page drawing by Hedda Zinner. With a short editorial introducing John Heartfield and his work on back cover. With portrait photograph of Heartfield. Evans, page 208.
23. AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 18, 1934. 14pp. Back cover with Heartfield photomontage: Zur Intervention des Dritten Reichs gegen die Internationale Karikaturen-Ausstellung im Kunstverein Mánes in Prag. Je mehr Bilder sie weghängen, umso sichtbarer wird die Wirklichkeit! (Intervention of the Third Reich against the International Caricature Exhibition at the Mánes Art Association in Prague. The more pictures they remove, the more visible becomes reality). Evans, page 210.
24. AIZ Jahrgang XIII Nr. 20, 1934. 14pp. Back cover with Heartfield photomontage: Dr. Goebbels, Der Gesundbeter "60 Million Antreten Zum Nachbeten!" (Dr. Goebbels, the Faith Healer "60 Million Report to Parrot!" The Reichs Propaganda leaders ordered a comprehensive campaign against defeatists and critics, rumormongers and agitators... (Heartfield subtext supporting montage). Evans, page 214.
25. AIZ Jahrgang XIV Nr. 9, 1935. 14pp. Cover with Heartfield photomontage: Das Spiel der Nazis mit dem Feuer. "Wenn die Welt erst brennt, werden wir schon beweisen, Daß Moskau der Brandstifter war." (The Nazis playing with fire. Once the world burns, we will manage to prove that Moscow was the arsonist). With article on the Reichstag fire on the occasion of the second anniversary of the fire. Wraps with some fraying and chipping along edges. Evans, page 296.
26. AIZ Jahrgang XIV Nr. 41, 1935. 10pp. Back cover with Heartfield photomontage: Der Platz and der Sonne "Ich will meinem Volk einen Platz and der Sonne verschaffen. Mussolini (The Place in the Sun. I want to provide my people with a place in the sun! Mussolini). With report on the Italian campaign in Abyssinia. Evans, page 316.
27. AIZ Jahrgang XV Nr, 10, 1936. 14pp. Printed in b/w. Back cover with Heartfield photomontage: Hitler erzählt Märchen II ...und dann schrie der arme deutsche Michel so lange, bis es alle Welt glaubte: "Zu Hilfe, zu Hilfe, ich bin eingekreist!" (Hitler tells fairy tales II ...and the poor German Michel screamed so long, that finally the whole world believed him: "Help, help, I am surrounded!" Special edition Oil and Blood. Light water staining along foredge of four pages, minimally affecting text and pictures. Evans, page 352.
28. AIZ Jahrgang XV Nr. 15, 1936. 10pp. Cover with Heartfield photomontage: Und auf Hitlers Friedensangebote folgen "alsbald" seine Friedenstauben (And Hitler's doves of peace will "immediately" follow his overtures of peace). Some light fraying along edges. Evans, page 362.
29. VI Die Volks-Illustrierte. Jahrgang 1937, Nr. 15, 14. April. 14pp. First issue in our collection with name changed to VI Die Volks-Illustrierte. Printed in sepia tones. Page 225 with full page Heartfield photomontage: Die Saat des Todes. Wo dieser Sämann geht durchs Land, Erntet er Hunger, Krieg und Brand (The seeds of death. Where this sower walks through the country, He reaps hunger, war and fire). One inch closed tears at two pages at foredge. Evans page 444.
30. VI Die Volks-Illustrierte. Jahrgang 1937 Nr. 42, 20. Oktober. 14pp. Back cover with Heartfield photomontage: Schach den Friedensstörern! (Check to the Disturbers of the Peace!). With report on the Spanish Civil War. Evans, page 476. Very good condition. Item #49804
John Heartfield (1891-1968), born Helmut Herzfeld, is best known for his "Use [of] Photography as a Weapon" - this line was written on a banner above the entrance of the room especially dedicated to his work at the 1929 exhibition "Film und Foto" in Stuttgart. Heartfield saw photomontage, a term coined by the Berlin Dadaists, as a tool of political protest and was best known and admired for his more than fifty photomontage dustjackets for book publications.
His vitae is "littered" with names instrumental in avant-garde movements of the 20th Century: George Grosz, Kurt Schwitters, Jan Tschichold, Herbert Bayer, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, El Lissitzky, Alexander Rodchenko, and famously Kurt Tuchosky in his work "Deutschland, Deutschland über alles," to which Heartfield contributed his photomontages. His publishing endeavors included the founding of the Malik Verlag, the Neue Jugend, a magazine published with George Grosz, and his 237 contributions to the AIZ (Illustrated Worker's Newspaper) between 1929 and 1938. During his stay in Russia, 1931-1932, Heartfield contributed to "Soviet Union in Construction," a collaboration between El Lissitzky and Rodchenko, experimenting with photography and photomontage.
With George Grosz Heartfiel edited and contributed to the first Communist satircal magazine, Der Knüppel (The Cudgel), from 1923 to 1927. His success in the 1929 Stuttgart Film und Foto exhibition prompted othe artist to show interest for the use of photomontage, e.g. Bayer and Moholy-Nagy in the German fashion magazine Neue Linie, and in Russia Rodchenko and Lissitzky as mentioned above.
Brecht congratulated th AIZ on its tenth anniversary in 1931 writing "the camera can lie just like the typesetting mahcine. The task of A-I-Z to serve truth and reproduce the real facts is of immense importance, and, it seems to me, has been achieved splendidly." (Brect in AIZ 10, No. 41, 1931). In 1933, after the takeover of the Nazis, Münzenberg moved to Paris and Heartfield to Prague, operating the Malik Verlag amd AIZ from there. The last AIZ issue published in Berlin was released on March 5, 1933, and Heartfield began publishing AIZ from Prague later that month. "Heartfield's first photomontage from Prague, Durch Licht zur Nacht (Through light to night; 5/33), a comment on Nazi book burning, appeared on 10 May, 1933." (David Evans, John Heartfield, page 12). The edition for each issue was reduced to 12,000 in Prague, compared to 500,000 in Berlin.
In 1936 Heartfield renamed AIZ to Volks-Illustrierte (VI) and in 1938 the operations were moved to France where seven additional issues without contributions by Heartfield were releasedbetween January 15th and February 26, 1939. Heartfield moved to London in 1940, after a narrow escape from the Gestapo. He was not welcomed by the British government but placed in various interment camps which had a severe effect on his health. Eventually he was able to continue his campaign against the Third Reich producing advertisements for the radio broadcast "Freedom Calling," a production utterly dispised by Adolf Hitler. In London Heartfield met Gertrud Fietz. They moved to East Germany in 1950 and got married there just before Heartfield's death in 1968.