Published by Hatje Cantz. Text by Max Baumann, Olav Løkke.
Ernst Schwitters (1918-1996) began his distinguished career in photography in his teens, converting the family bathroom into a darkroom with the consent of his parents, Kurt and Helma Schwitters, at the age of 15--by which time Ernst was already experimenting with photograms, following a visit from family friend Man Ray. His father encouraged him to undergo formal training in photography, but Ernst declined, preferring to teach himself, and by 1930 he was already participating in international exhibitions, having found his preferred subject matter in the landscapes of Norway and England. Having led the Schwitters family's migration from Nazi Germany to Norway, Ernst was to receive great acclaim there for both his landscape and architectural photography, and was also able to establish financial security through assignments for the Norwegian advertising agency SS-UNU-Foto. It is little known that Schwitters is one of color photography's pioneers: he began working with color film in 1943, and within two decades, he had created more than 10,000 slides, many of which have been digitally restored for this handsome new volume. The only monograph on the photographer currently in print, The Colors of Norway debuts Schwitters' vast oeuvre of color landscape photography, and also includes a fascinating account of the digital restoration process that allowed for their publication here.
Published by Hatje Cantz Publishers. Essays by Olav LØkke and Robert Meyer.
The oeuvre of photographer Ernst Schwitters (son of Kurt Schwitters), who lived in Norway from 1937 to 1940 and from 1945 until his death in 1996, is still largely unknown today. As a child growing up in Germany, Ernst Schwitters acquired basic skills in photography, documenting many of his father's works. In 1929, a visit from Man Ray opened his eyes to avant-garde experimentation, and he went on to develop the technique of the classical photogram. Soon afterward, he began to show his abstract works internationally. In the late 1940s and 50s he was regarded as one of Norway's leading photographers. This first broad overview of Schwitters's work is comprised primarily of previously unpublished photographs. In addition to photograms from the early 30s, there are architectural and industrial photographs and Norwegian landscapes.