Ohne Titel (Rote Rose)

Schwitters, Kurt, 1932

collage, 18,1x14cm, Henie-Onstad Art Center

In this collage by Kurt Schwitters (1880-1948) Ohne Titel (Rote Rose) (Untitled – Red Rose) from the early 1930s there are several fragments of Norwegian text.

On a torn-off slip of paper partly covered in scribble, partial images of an assortment of Narvesen’s sales items can be made out; magazines, tobacco and chocolate. There is also a segment of a German menu from Schwitter’s journey by boat to Spitsbergen. The collage is characterised by a refined and bold palette and a precise compositional form.

Kurt Schwitters visited Norway for the first time in 1929 when he and his wife Helma took a cruise along the Norwegian coast. He visited the country many times throughout the 1930s, and settled here in 1937 after fleeing the Nazis in his native Germany. He remained living in Norway with his family for three years before having to flee once again after the German invasion. This time to England.