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* 9.7.1950 Ohmstal

Born in 1950 im Ohmstal, Alois Lichtsteiner is today considered one of the most important Swiss exponents of post-figurative painting. While representation is still his starting point, his pictures go beyond the reproduction of a naturalistic image, by treating the painting as an analogy of the subject in question. Thus, Alois Lichtsteiner refers to the canvas as the “body” and the application of paint as the “skin”. The subjects of his pictures, which range from body parts, to birch trees, to mountains, are consequently metaphors for that interrelationship. Therefore, the snow-covered mountain landscape, which transforms into an abstract-like interplay of light and dark beyond the forest edge, acquires a particular significance in his œuvre. As a passionate mountaineer, Alois Lichtsteiner harks back to the associative potential of that pictorial landscape, which already in the 19th century was presented as the symbol of longing, although for him personally it is the existential experience of disorientation and being exposed on the mountainside which fascinate him.

Far more essential for Alois Lichtsteiner, however, is the second level of meaning, in which we see a reciprocity between the layers of paint on the canvas and the snow-covered rocks; although strictly speaking he is painting the opposite, in that he is painting not snow on rocks, but rock-like colour surfaces on the snow-like primer of the canvas. In this contradiction and the unsettled positioning between self-referential painting and a subject rich with associations, there unfolds the complexity of an artist, whose work at first glance sways us from a purely aesthetic point of view.

Alois Lichtsteiner completed his studies at the school of applied art in Zurich and taught at the Ecole Cantonale d'Art du Valais in France, amongst other places. He has appeared many times in solo and collective publications. His work is regularly celebrated in the most well-known art venues in the country, including the Kunstmuseum in Lucerne, the Kunsthalle in Bern and the Kunsthaus Zurich.

Works from our auctions

Works by this artist from our auctions

Following are some examples of works by this artist from our past and future auctions.
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Lot 3487 - A181 PostWar & Contemporary - Saturday 01 July 2017, 01.30 PM


(Ohmstal 1950–lives and works i.a. in Paris)
o.T. (Berg). 2001/02.
Oil on canvas.
Signed on the reverse: A. Lichtsteiner, as well as titled, dated and with the measurements: o.T. (Berg) 2001/02 260/180.
260 x 180 cm.

CHF 14 000 / 18 000 | (€ 14 430 / 18 560)

Sold for CHF 17 300 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3487 - A201 PostWar & Contemporary - Thursday 30 June 2022, 05.00 PM


(Ohmstal 1950–lives and works in Paris)
o.T. (Birke). 2000/15.
Oil on canvas.
Signed, dated and titled: o.T. (Birke) 2000/15 A. Lichtsteiner.
100 × 120 cm.

CHF 5 000 / 7 000 | (€ 5 150 / 7 220)

Sold for CHF 6 250 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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