Merz Barn

I had never heard of this project before Green Door, the art group I belong to, announced it would be holding an exhibition there in Sept. Located in a remote woodland in the heart of the Langdale valley in Cumbria, Merz Barn still stands as Kurt Schwitters left it unfinished in 1948. Schwitters was a German artist who could be considered to be the first installation artist. He created several of these barns but all but this one were destroyed. After his arrival in England during the war and especially after hearing of the destruction of the Hanover Merzbau,  Schwitters was desperate to resume what he considered to be his lifetime’s work, and create a final, permanent Merzbau. This he started just outside Elterwater in 1947 but it was never completed. A Trust is now trying to restore this derelict barn to what it would have been.

Graham and I visited there recently.  It is a magical place and we were full of admiration for the couple who stay there and caretake the area. I painted in the sunshine and look forward to the exhibition to see how others responded to this special place.

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