The finished version of The Merry-Go-Round (Tate Gallery, London) was completed in October 1916, and exhibited at the London Group exhibition in April 1917 to mixed reviews. The critic from The Sunday Times considered that it was 'Gertler at his brazen best ... a joyous clash of metallic blues and shrill orange yellows, a riot we almost hear as we enter the gallery. It is the apotheosis of the steam organ in paint, and a style of decoration admirably fitted for the adornment of a popular restaurant'. But the critic from The Observer remarked that 'The undeniable talent of Mr. Gertler is wasted upon performances of incredible eccentricity, like the painting Merry-Go-Round with its crude clashing of unbroken blue, red, orange, and black on figures as wooden as those of the carved animals, and the sculptural and equally crudely coloured group of contortionist acrobats. All this is sheer sensationalism'.
(see J. Woodeson, Mark Gertler Biography of a Painter, London, 1972, p.367).