Bild N/Weinachtsbild mit grossem N

Schwitters, Kurt, 1938

Oil, collage, wood, porcelain, metal and plaster on panel , 65,6 x 53,9 cm, Henie-Onstad Art Center

Kurt Schwitters (1887-1948) was an all-around artist who worked in a number of mediums and genres; painting, assemblage, collage, sculpture, lithography, poetry, music and architecture.

The assemblage works, which Bild N (Picture N) is an example of, are composed of an assortment of materials and objects that Schwitters collected. It could be anything from a length of chain, pieces of wood and planks, to stones, ropes and plaster elements. In other words, mundane objects and residual products. Schwitters was one of the first artists to make this working method a predominant part of his artistic project.

He was not particularly interested in the “content” of art, but rather in the problems related to form. It was the unique qualities of the materials and objects that preoccupied him. By employing trash and waste material he wished to enliven art; in a concrete and metaphorical sense he wished to transform reality into art.

At Henie Onstad Kunstsenter you can study Bild N (Picture N) and the remainder of the DNB Savings Bank Foundation’s Schwitters collection at close range.

Read more about the Schwitters collection

By: Oda Wildhagen Gjessing