Whilst interned in a camp during the Second World War, and in his later life in Britain, Schwitters made hundreds of portraits to earn a living.



Choosing to leave Germany in 1937 after his work was condemned as ‘degenerate’ by the Nazi government, Schwitters settled in Norway for three years. He escaped to Britain in June 1940 after the Nazi occupation of Norway.

Schwitters was one of many German exiles, including a significant number of artists, to be interned on the Isle of Man during the Second World War. Whilst in the camp he produced over 200 works, including many portraits. On release in 1941 he became involved with the London art scene, and continued to make portraits of those around him. TateShots went to meet some of his sitters.


I am delighted to have had the opportunity to see so much of Schwitters' work and to appreciate his contribution to the art world.

However, I found the sound track of the Ursonate while I was walking round the exhibition discordant and distracting, especially before getting to Room 4. Could it have been isolated in some way?

loved the exhibition; his versatility as an artist shows through from his formal portraits to his use of mixed media in collages and 3D objects such as in the "Skittles". But for me the collages win; as an ex quilter of crazy quilts I like the complex layering of pieces and the ethos of recycling; from theatre tickets to feathers, nettting and the odd ping pong ball. See my review at http://tinyurl.com/bk3wnfb