Schwitters, Kurt Herman Edward Karl Julius

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Schwitters, Kurt Herman Edward Karl Julius (1887–1948). German artist. In 1917 he made collages from detritus collected from dumps and streets which he called Merz (Cast-Off). He then created Merzbau (Cast-Off Building) which virtually took over his entire dwelling in Hanover (1923–32—destroyed). The Merzbau was wholly unfunctional, and was really an essay in which Expressionism, De Stijl, and Constructivism merged: it, in turn (from pictures and descriptions), seems to have exercised a powerful influence on the work of several late-C20 and early-C21 architects. He built a Merz mural in Ambleside, English Lake District (1947–8), later moved to King's College, Newcastle upon Tyne.

Bibliography

BaLa (1987);
Chilvers, Osborne, & Farr (eds.) (1988);
Gumard (2000);
Schmalenbach (1970);
Steinitz (1968)