Fourteen years ago the MERZ site was an abandoned and derelict plumbers’ yard. There were two remaining buildings from Sanquhar’s former ‘lemonade’ factory of the 1890s, or Sharps Aerated Water Company. Work began on repairing and repurposing the brick built factory to open as MERZ Gallery. In 2011 MERZ Gallery opened with David Rushton‘s exhibition Models & Metaphors, Concepts & Conceits. Several exhibitions later, Charles Jencks exhibited with Ocean All Over and two years later with the American based architect Daniel Libeskind. Charles worked on various projects from 2015 to develop the Multiverse landscape in nearby Crawick.
In 2018 conversion of the Bothy was completed to become the first MERZ artist residency building. Built in miniature as a micro-house the design still needed to comply with full-size housing access regulations.