Born in Zurich in 1914, Wilfrid Moser’s youth was marked by the paintings in the midst of which he lived, especially the Utrillos and Rouaults which his father had just acquired. A voyage to Italy revealed to him the grandiose simplicity of the Tuscan landscapes and left him filled with wonder by the light of the Sienese primitives. Several years later, he discovered Spain and Morocco which aroused his need to make color sing, and it was there that he made the acquaintance of Nicolas de Staël. Moser moved to Paris in 1945. Presented in 1952 by Louis Nallard to Jean-François Jaeger, he has been one of the most supported artists by the gallery, with fourteen solo exhibitions.
His works, which one can call expressionist, oscillate between realism and abstraction. They are strongly influenced by the intensity of Parisian experience: successions of streets, enclosed houses, butcher’s shops, metro stations and bridges. He adapted that energy in an incredible variety of media: his paintings strewn with collages, his synthetic sculptures striped with red and white or again his landscapes of mountains in shades of gray. After Hodler and Kirchner, Moser opened a new chapter of mountain painting in Swiss art. The work of Wilfrid Moser can be found in important public collections and, in 2009, the Berne Kunstmuseum gave a large retrospective of his work. On the occasion of the Centennial of Wilfrid Moser’s birth in 2014, the gallery organized the exhibition “Moser, l’insoumis, sur les traces du piéton du petit matin” with the support of the eponymous foundation in Zurich. This exhibition, presenting painting, sculptures, and drawings, offered a retrospective panorama of his œuvre attesting to the originality of Moser in postwar art.
In 2016, during the exhibition “Courbet et la Nature”, the Abbey of Auberive (France) offers a new perspective on nature in Gustave Courbet’s paintings through a confrontation with contemporary artists. For this exhibition, the gallery lends major works by Wilfrid Moser.