Though born in Switzerland, Klee lived much of his life in Germany until the rise of the Third Reich in the 1930s. As part of Hitler's attempt to rid the country of "degenerate art," many prominent artists were either forced to leave the country (Max Beckmann and Max Ernst, for example) or became trapped in internal exile (like Otto Dix). Klee fled for his former Swiss home, where he lived for seven more years. His work became part of the Nazis' notorious "Degenerate Art" exhibit, which featured 17 of his pieces that the Third Reich regarded as perfect examples of the "corruption of art." Klee responded to Hitler's artistic purge through his own work, visually reproducing the inhumanity of the Nazi regime.
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