In 1917 the 30 year-old artist was drafted into military service, which he spent in the orderly room, due to his suffering from epilepsy. He was discharged after four months. The impressions of the war and the inflation made him a modern artist, who even left Expressionism behind; his first collages emerged in 1918, for which Kurt Schwitters used litter found by chance.
"Anna Blume", a collection of poems and prosaic texts published in 1919, made him famous far beyond Hanover's boundaries. He got in contact with Herwarth Walden, Hans Arp and Tristan Tzara and took part in the "Sturm"-exhibitions in New York and Zurich. His strong ties to the Bauhaus-artists, the Dutch Dadaists and constructivists, to whom he dedicated the first issue of the "Merz"-magazine in 1923, became important for Schwitters as well.
From 1923 on he worked as a commercial artist, graphic designer and typographer for several companies from Hanover and beyond. In 1927 he founded the "ring neuer werbegestalter" (circle of new commercial artists) together with Cesar Domela, Lázlo Moholy-Nagy and Friedrich Vordemberge-Gildewart, in which Willi Baumeister and Walter Dexel also joined.
Kurt Schwitters died in Ambleside (Westmorland) on 8 January 1948. It is only after his death that his life's work is appreciated internationally. Schwitters was far ahead of his time and strongly influenced the art of assemblage of the neo-dadaist artists, like Robert Rauschenberg for example.(schwitters-kurt.com)