Gottfried Honegger

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Gottfried Honegger

Gottfried Honegger was born in 1917 in Zurich, Switzerland. From 1932 to 1933 he visited the School for Applied Art in Zürich and continued thereafter working as an interior decorator. 1936 he exposes for the first time his art works in his atelier in Zürich. In 1937, he initiates together with the artist and graphic designer Warja Lavater, his future wife, a gallery aimed for graphic works, decoration and photography. Honegger designs posters and illustrations for the public space and magazines. As grafic designer, lecturer and publicist he came to be an influential stakeholder for Swiss graphic design. One year later, he gets a teaching assignment for interior design at the School for Applied Art in Zürich. From 1939 to 1945 he lives in Paris. Afterwards Gottfried Honegger moves with his wife and both daughters to Zürich. In 1950, he develops together with the printer Emile Matthieu new types of printing technology.
It’s not before 1957 his artistic skills take on another dimension. Honegger moves then to New York and becomes inspired by avant-garde artists like Al Held, Sam Francis and Mark Rothko.
After returning to Switzerland and part-time to Paris, Gottfried Honegger quits his job as grafic designer. From year 1970 he dedicates himself to arts and crafts aimed in the first place for the public space and gets various commissions for the design of public spaces, glass windows, reliefs and sculptures in France, Germany, the USA and Switzerland. He designs for example in 1990 a wall for a train station in Zürich, the windows for the cathedrale Saint-Cyr in Nevers in 1993 or a façade of the University of Créteil in Paris in 1996. At the same time, his extended exhibitions worldwide made him an international figure representing concrete, abstract art to a broad audience. Further he is honoured with several prizes and decorations, as for example the decoration of the Légion d’honneur in 2001.  For Honegger’s 90th birtday, the university of technology in Switzerland dedicated the exhibition “Gottfried Honegger – works in the public space” to him. The artist died in January 2016 in Zurich.

Erich Langjahr

Für eine schöne Welt.

With Gottfried Honegger and Kurt Sigrist

www.langjahr-film.ch