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MERZ responds to Covid-19 for 9th May ‘exhibition’

To celebrate WORLD COLLAGE DAY on 9th May MERZ had planned to exhibit the 200 or so envelopes and packages in which the Schwitters’ Army had forwarded their collages for the January exhibition. Instead of displaying in the gallery (where they will not be seen in compliance with Covid-19 guidelines) we’ve made a very short ‘film collage’ of the envelope covers.These incorporate the artist’s packaging intentions together with the multiple additions made by postal and customs services, as labels, stamps, scribbles and impressions as the collages inside their packages travelled the world to Sanquhar.

The connection with ‘postal services’ arose because Sanquhar’s post office, providing the longest uninterupted service in the world, is threatened with closure. Plans were abandoned to run a ‘post office at MERZ‘ for World Collage Day, where local kids would send postcards to several of the collage artists. Instead Julia Zinnbauer, prospective artist in residence for July and August, has joined with curator and artist Lada Wilson of the 201 ‘telephone box’ gallery in Fife to extend the theme of ‘communications’ and to form an exhibition visible through a recessed window being purpose-built into the outer wall of MERZ gallery.

Current artists in residence, Calum Wallis and Rhona Jack are helping with the build. The recess is on course to ‘open’ on the 9th May in an incidental way for local dog-walkers and passers-by. We hope that Julia’s Summer residency will proceed but MERZ and Julia have plans for a virtual residency, extending the communications theme into a longer, probably film based, project. More on Julia and Lada‘s intervention for the 9th May nearer the time …