Thursday, 11 March 2010

Kurt Schwitters

'The Merzbau in Hannover was a fantastically constructed interior, as bewildering as it was abstract. The walls and ceiling were covered with a diversity of three - dimensional shapes and the room itself was crowded with materials and objects - or "spoils and relics", as Schwitters himself put it - which were contained in countless nooks and grottoes, some of them totally obstructed by later additions to the work, with the result that their contents then existed only in one's memory of the Merzbau in one of its former states.'


Title Reconstructions of the Merzbau, Fig. 1a
Artist Kurt Schwitters
Desicription Merzbau
© DACS 2007
Photo: Wilhelm Redemann, 1933

Schwitters is much more famous for the Merzbau but I find myself drawn to the following two pieces by Schwitters that make me think about how work is presented or described. Note these are described as 'constructed painting'.

Artist Kurt Schwitters
Description constructed painting with frame
From a photograph taken by Cecil Touchon at the Modern Art Museum in Mexico City Aug 2003

Re-Use of materials

The re-use of materials is no new concept. In choosing most materials for re-use I find that already a creative mind somewhere has exploited my material of choice. I am interested in the journey of materials, that is the processes that a material goes through until it ends up in a place where I gain access to it. This is a physical processing of the raw material itself as well as a physical journey of where it has been in the world, another intriguing side of this journey is to do with these materials coming into contact. For example,

Material 1: Pallet

Material 2: Tin Cans

There are many examples of re-use of these materials individually but I find it interesting to romanticise the idea that these two materials which I have obtained from separate places had met previously. It is highly unlikely that these commercial size baked beans cans had been transported on this particular pallet but the concept remains to be explored.

I sketched the design for two side tables with the intention of using the pallet that I had found. My design of a wooden frame (pallet) which supports a metal (tin can) top is informed by the idea that the pallet would have supported the tin cans through transport. The following few sketches illustrate this.




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