German painter, sculptor, designer and writer. He studied at the Kunstakademie in Dresden between 1909 and 1914. His early painting was naturalistic and, later, impressionist until he came into contact with Expressionism, particularly that linked to the Der Sturm movement. He painted mysterious and apocalyptic landscapes as well as writing Expressionist poetry for the magazine, Der Sturm. In Berlin, after meeting Hans Arp, Raoul Hausmann, Hannah Hach and Richard Huelsenbeck, he became involved with the Dada movement and started producing collages which he called Merzbilder (which could be translated as "constructions"). Thereafter the term merz became the name for his particular movement and philosophy. Despite his work being full of allusions to the political and cultural conditions of the time, he was never satirical nor controversial. Between 1922 and 1930, he worked with and befriended El Lissitzky and Theo van Doesburg. His magazine, Merz, published irregularly between 1923 and 1932, gave considerable attention to the ideas and art of Constructivism. In 1924, he established his own advertising and design agency in Hanover, where he promoted new typographical forms. His most important project realised between the two World Wars was Merzbau, a vast sculptural construction that took up most of the artist's house and studio. Around 1930, he worked with the Parisian magazine Cercle et Carré and joined the group, Abstraction-Création. In 1937, he took part in the exhibition Entartete Kunst and constructed a second Merzbau in Lysaker. Between 1940 and 1941, he was a prisoner on the Isle of Man and, in 1945, moved to Little Langdale, where he concentrated largely on portrait painting to earn his living. He produced some collages based on the imagery of American magazines that, to some extent, anticipated Pop Art and broadened the Dada collage tradition.