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adolf wölfli – creator of the universeart of adolf wölfli | early drawings - musical compositions (1904-1907) | from the cradle to the grave (1908-1912) | geographic and algebraic books (1912-1916) | books with songs and dances (1917-1922) | funeral march (1928-1930) | bread art (1916-1930) | news | biography of adolf wölfli (1864-1930) | exhibition adolf wölfli - creator of the universe - prague 2012 | catalogue | technical backend info | informations and contacts | >>>česky >>>facebook
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art of adolf wölfli

Adolf Wölfli was an or­phan, who spent half of his life in an asy­lum for the men­tally ill in Wal­dau near Bern. He was able to trans­form his so­cial iso­la­tion and men­tal dis­abil­ity through his bound­less cre­ative po­ten­tial. Wölfli cre­ated a com­plex par­al­lel world, for which he in­vented a new bi­og­ra­phy, an imag­i­nary ge­og­ra­phy and an al­ter­na­tive his­tory, as well as a new range of nu­mer­als and thou­sands of songs. His life work, the es­tab­lish­ment of the "St. Adolf Gi­ant Cre­ation", is con­tained in 45 books and more than 25,000 pages of texts, mu­si­cal scores, nu­mero­log­i­cal records and, above all, 1,600 draw­ings and 1,640 col­lages. De­spite the fact that Wölfli's iconog­ra­phy is rooted in the cul­ture which sur­rounded him, he tran­scends this cul­ture by fill­ing it with a new mean­ing in cor­re­spon­dence with his per­sonal mythol­ogy.

As far as the con­tent is con­cerned, it can be said that to­tally every­thing is rep­re­sented there – not only what we can di­rectly see but, in gen­eral, every­thing what we can think of or sense,“ wrote psy­chi­a­trist Wal­ter Mor­gen­thaler, who was in charge of Wölfli and ded­i­cated the book Ein Geis­teskranker als Künstler (Madness and Art. The Life and Works of Adolf Wölfli) to his pa­tient (1921). In this book, for the first time ever, a psy­chi­atric pa­tient was la­beled an artist and not pre­sented in terms straight from a case his­tory, but by name and sur­name.


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