As part of our Arts Award, Years 5 and 6 having been learning about more artists from around the world. Classes 1, 2 and 3 have visited Hatton Gallery to find out about German artist Kurt Schwitters and Irish-American artist Sean Scully.

Kurt Schwitters

The children used one of the exhibitions at the Hatton to find out about this amazing artist.
Kurt Hermann Eduard Karl Julius Schwitters was a German artist who was born in Hanover, Germany. Schwitters worked in several genres and media, including Dadaism, Constructivism, Surrealism, poetry, sound, painting, sculpture, graphic design, typography, and what came to be known as installation art. He is most famous for his collages, called Merz Pictures.

Kurt Schwitters’ Merz Barn Wall

The Merz Barn Wall will takes pride of place at the centre of the Hatton. The Merz Barn Wall is part of a construction created by German artist Kurt Schwitters in a Lake District barn in 1947-8. The Elterwater Merz Barn was based on the idea of collage, in which found items are incorporated into an art work. Schwitters applied a rough layer of decorator’s plaster and paint over these found objects, giving the three dimensional collage an abstract quality. Asked what it meant, he replied ‘all it is, is form and colour, just form and colour’.

The barn was designed as a permanent structure, somewhere Schwitters could exhibit existing work. When he died in January 1948 it was left unfinished. In 1965, after lengthy discussions about the barn’s future, the Wall was given to Newcastle University who undertook its removal, restoration and preservation.

Making their own collage

The children took inspiration from Schwitter’s collage technique to create their own designs using various material, colours and textures.

Sean Scully

Sean Scully is renowned globally as the master of Post-Minimalist Abstraction and it was in 1968 when Scully started at Newcastle University that the breakthroughs in his work occurred, laying the foundation for the rest of his career.

Presenting paintings and drawings from 1968-1974, this exhibition demonstrates the remarkable early confidence of Scully’s work and the genesis of his continued fascination with stripes, and the spaces in between.

Now in his seventies, Scully has been twice shortlisted for the Turner Prize and his work is in the collection of virtually every major museum around the world.

Sean Scully: 1970 is presented across the Hatton Gallery and the Laing Art Gallery.

Look at what we can do!

The children again used the works of a renowned artist to create their own piece of art. They used a layering technique like Scully. The results were fantastic!