Ludwig Merwart

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Ludwig Merwart
Born(1913-09-01)1 September 1913 [1]
Vienna, Austria [1]
Died 13 July 1979(1979-07-13) (aged 65) [1]
Vienna [1]
Nationality Austrian
Education Academy of Fine Arts Vienna [1]
Known for Painting, printmaking
Movement Tachism

Ludwig Merwart (1 September 1913 13 July 1979) was an influential Austrian painter and graphic artist. He is an important representative of Tachism and was a major force in graphic arts and prints, especially after World War II. His work belongs to the most significant and interesting contributions to graphic arts in Austria to this day.

Graphic arts processes and techniques for making images that depend upon line and not color to render the design

A category of fine art, graphic art covers a broad range of visual artistic expression, typically two-dimensional, i.e. produced on a flat surface. The term usually refers to the arts that rely more on line or tone than on colour, especially drawing and the various forms of engraving; it is sometimes understood to refer specifically to printmaking processes, such as line engraving, aquatint, drypoint, etching, mezzotint, monotype, lithography, and screen printing. Graphic art further includes calligraphy, photography, painting, typography, computer graphics, and bindery. It also encompasses drawn plans and layouts for interior and architectural designs.

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.


Merwart’s unique technique of iron etching attracted great attention in the 50s and 60s and 70s. In 1959 he exhibited his work at the documenta 2 in Kassel (Germany) and at the V. Biennale de São Paulo (Brasil), the following year at the International Graphic Biennale in Cincinnati (Ohio) and the Tate Gallery in London (Great Britain).

Etching intaglio printmaking technique

Etching is traditionally the process of using strong acid or mordant to cut into the unprotected parts of a metal surface to create a design in intaglio (incised) in the metal. In modern manufacturing, other chemicals may be used on other types of material. As a method of printmaking, it is, along with engraving, the most important technique for old master prints, and remains in wide use today. In a number of modern variants such as microfabrication etching and photochemical milling it is a crucial technique in much modern technology, including circuit boards.

<i>documenta</i> exhibition of modern and contemporary art in Kassel, Germany

documenta is an exhibition of contemporary art which takes place every five years in Kassel, Germany. It was founded by artist, teacher and curator Arnold Bode in 1955 as part of the Bundesgartenschau which took place in Kassel at that time, and was an attempt to bring Germany up to speed with modern art, both banishing and repressing the cultural darkness of Nazism. This first documenta featured many artists who are generally considered to have had a significant influence on modern art. The more recent documentas feature art from all continents; nonetheless most of it is site-specific.

Tate art institution in the United Kingdom

Tate is an institution that houses, in a network of four art museums, the United Kingdom's national collection of British art, and international modern and contemporary art. It is not a government institution, but its main sponsor is the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

“These prints rung from iron, acid and color, radiate tranquility, confidence and creativity. The adventure of a method reaching back to the very roots and origins of the creative impulse have here captured a phenomenon, which, independent of the process of realization, afford the viewer an experience of pronounced aesthetic intensity.” (Dr. Wilhelm Mrazek, Former Director of the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts in Vienna, Austria)


(sample of recent years)

Sankt Pölten Place in Lower Austria, Austria

Sankt Pölten, mostly abbreviated to the official name St. Pölten, is the capital and largest city of the State of Lower Austria in northeast Austria, with 52,716 inhabitants as of 1 January 2015. St Pölten is a city with its own statute and therefore it is both a municipality and a district in the Mostviertel.

Linz City in Upper Austria, Austria

Linz is the third-largest city of Austria and capital of the state of Upper Austria. It is in the north centre of Austria, approximately 30 kilometres south of the Czech border, on both sides of the River Danube. The population of the city is 204,846, and that of the Greater Linz conurbation is about 789,811.

Solo exhibitions

Group exhibitions


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 "ludwig merwart - life".

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Further reading