Last Thursday 27 /11/2014 O’Connor was at Tate Britain to attend the Conference “Housing Merz in 21st Century”.
The well attended and thought provoking conference looked at the artistic legacy of the Merz Barn and Kurt Schwitters in Britain.
Seminars included Anthony Penrose from Farley Farm House recounting the Life and work of his mother, Lee Miller and the archive of her life’s work. He recounted the story of his father, Roland, entertaining Picasso at their home and Anthony, as a toddler, biting Picasso in playful mood, only for Picasso to bite him back.
Repositioning the regional and rural as new artistic and critical “wild zones” had contributions from, amongst many others;
Amira Gad, Exhibitions Curator Serpentine Gallery, Shorefast Foundation / Fogo Islands Dialogues, New Foundland, Canada,
Stephanie Sherman, Director, Elsewhere project, Greensboro, North Carolina, USA
Alice Workman, Senior Director, Hauser and Wirth project Somerset
Recovering the historical sites and artistic legacies of Merz and DADA;
Dr Isabel Schulz, Curator Kurt Schwitters Archiv, Sprengel Museum Hanover.
Dr Karin Hellandsjo, Director Kurt Schwitters project, Oslo, Norway.
Dr Adrian Notz, Director Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich.
Michael Nyman is composing an Opera based on ANNA BLUME, Schwitters poetic muse.
A performance of Schwitters poetic works was given by a guy whose name escapes me and a very interesting talk was given by Professor Valerie Preston Dunlop on the links between DADA and performing arts.
After the lunch and before the commencement of the afternoon sessions two of my works, as a Hommage to KS, were presented by Helen Goodman MP Shadow Minister for Culture to an organisation called PEN, who assisted and provided succour for artists during and since the Second World War.
The title of each piece read ” Mit herzlichen Danken, PEN No 1 & No 2 (Martin B O’Connor for) Kurt Schwitters 2014.
No 1 (above), No 2 (below).
On the reverse “Presented by the artist at the “Housing Merz IN THE 21st Century Conference on behalf of Kurt Schwitters to PEN with thanks and in recognition of the help and support given to artists throughout and after the Second World War. TATE BRITAIN, LONDON 27/11/2014”.