Here's a piece of classic Futurist prose to go along with the pictures: "For twenty seven years we Futurists have rebelled against the idea that war is anti-aesthetic....We therefore state:... War is beautiful because--thanks to its gas masks, its terrifying megaphones, its flame throwers, and light tanks--it establishes man's domination over the subjugated machine. War is beautiful because it inaugurates the dreamed-of metallization of the human body. War is beautiful because it enriches a flpwering meadow with fiery orchids of machine guns. War is beautiful because it combines gunfire, barrages, cease fires, scents, and the fragrance of putrefaction into a symphony. War is beautiful because it creates new architectures, like those of armonred tanks, geometric squadrons of aircraft, spirals of smoke from burning villages, and much more....Poets and artists of Futurism,...remember these principles of an aesthetic of war, that they may illuminate...your struggles for a new poetry and a new sculpture!" This is from E.F.T. Marinetti's manifesto for the colonial war in Ethiopia. Marinetti's other works included Futurismo e Fascismo (1924), which argued that fascism is the politics of Futurism. The passage is quoted by Walter Benjamin at the end of the essay "The Work of Art in the Age of Reproducibility" (1939). Benjamin, as many here know, denounces this sort of thinking as, among other things, sinister nonsense and terrifying delusion. Take a look at Walter Benjamin, Selected Writings (Harvard UP), vol 4 for more. His 1930 essay "Theories of German Fascism" is also quite prescient. a few years ago I saw a fantastic exhibit of futurist art in Rome, apperently the biggest ever assembled. I have to say it was great art. horrible ideas, great astetics. but I also think that, in an entirly different way, the art that came out of wwi from germany and austria was phenominal. If I had to chose a 10 year period when some of my favorite are was produced, it would be wwi and the years after.