I didn’t know that influential German artist Kurt Schwitters spent the last years of his life in exile in England’s Lake District creating something called the ‘Merz Barn’. Did you?
Schwitters started constructing the original ‘Merzbau’ (pictured above) inside his Hannover studio in the 1920′s and continued to work on it until he fled Nazi Germany in 1937. The Merzbau itself was later destroyed in an Allied bombing raid in World War II.
The uncompleted ‘Merz Barn’ that Schwitters began building near Elterwater in the Lake District is much less well-known. The latest TateShots video visits this only surviving example of Schwitters’ Merz environment:
(I’m not entirely sure how or why radio presenter Tom Ravenscroft (son of the late John Peel) is involved, but if you don’t listen to his weekly music show on BBC, you should probably take a listen… if you like that sort of thing.)