Media Media Cubist Composition: Kurt Schwitters
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Directory: Fine Art: Paintings: Oil: Europe: German: Pre 1940: item # 1159506
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|Kurt Schwitters, 1887-1948, German. This mixed media is typical of his mixed media cubist pieces. Auction records for these pieces go up to $250,000 and his works are in many museums. He is known for Genre, Portraits, Mixed Media Cubist Composition as well as Landscapes and Still Lifes. Kurt Schwitters creator of the magazine MERZ spent his life creating works of art and literature following this form. This art consists of discarded and rejected objects which the artist found or received from friends and associates. His works followed an Expressionist style until his brief time in the army during WWI when they took on a more modern style. In the early 1920s these works gained him recognition with the Dada movement. In 1923 Schwitters began publication of MERZ which brought forth constructivism in art. His work on the magazine allowed him to branch into the advertising and design business as well. In 1927 he began work on his sculpture the Merzbau or Cathedral of Erotic Misery. The sculpture was constructed in his studio out of various materials and became large enough that the ceiling was removed to continue the project. Many of the materials used for this project were personal belongings of friends, family and from himself. A bombing raid destroyed this work in 1943. Many of Schwitters' works were confiscated by the Nazi regime with some being exhibited in the “Degenerate Art Exhibit” forcing the artist with his son to flee to Norway. There the artist returned to the use of natural materials and landscapes. His second sculpture of the Merzbau was constructed in Lysakar and was destroyed by fire in 1951. The German invasion of Norway forced Schwitters and his son to flee to England. He moved to London in 1941, continued to create sculptures and began a third form of the Merzbau in an old barn in the Lake District near Ambleside. He died on January 8, 1948 near Ambleside of a prolonged illness. In early 2009 artist Damien Hirst and Ian Hunter began efforts to restore the barn studio Schwitters used in the Lake District. The restoration project will house a replica of the Merzbau built there and serve as a community gallery.|