Kurt Schwitters is widely considered to be one of the 20th-century’s great artists.

Having worked prolifically throughout Europe in the earlier parts of his career, he continued to create works at a remarkable rate in later life, living in quiet anonymity in Ambleside, poverty-stricken, and with rapidly declining health. The more naturalistic, impressionistic works of these later years – of which this work is an example – have generally been ignored or dismissed as mere potboilers, hastily churned out to make a living. However, they reveal a good deal about the artist’s intricate relationship with nature as he had always insisted that his well received abstract work was grounded in nature: ‘No man can create from his fantasy alone. Sooner or later it will run dry on him, and only by the constant study of nature will he be able to replenish it and keep it fresh.’ This painting depicts one of Ambleside’s local landmarks and evokes a world of swaying strange colours.

Provenance

Private collection North-Rhine Westphalia; Almuth and Otto-Albrecht Neumueller, 1981. The work has been vetted by the Art Loss Register.


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