Yesterday saw the opening of Tate Britain’s latest major show, Schwitters In Britain. As a result the eccentric German artist who inspired Pop Art and was a founder of the Dada movement is the man of the moment. We believe it’s about time this artist was honoured everywhere as one of the key modernists.
Of course, the grandfather of British Pop, Sir Peter Blake, was ahead of the game. Kurt Schwitters was one of the artists selected by Blake in 2010 for his exhibition ‘Homage 10 x 5’. For the show Blake chose the ten artists “that emerged at the top of my inspiration list” and created five works either in the style of or taking cues from each artist. Blake gave his nod of appreciation to Schwitters, in works such as Deon, for inventing the highly original collage style he adopted and ran away with during his career, “When Schwitters made the first collage by literally picking up a piece of rubbish, a sweet wrapper, a bus ticket and a piece of wood, that was pure invention.”
From fleeing the Nazis in Norway, to poetry performances in an Isle of Man internment camp, and a Cumbrian barn transformation, Kurt Schwitters’ extraordinary story is full of remarkable creativity. Don’t miss this brilliant Tate exhibition or Blake’s beautiful homage!