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About Victor H. BÄCHER
Victor H. Bächer was a Swiss painter and drawer who was born on August 28, 1933, in Winterthur and passed away on December 7, 2015, in Zurich. He was a member of the Zurich Expressive Figuration (ZEF) artist group and his work spanned various forms of art including painting, drawing, public art, lithography, screen printing, and sculpture. Bächer was raised in Winterthur as the son of a typesetter and pursued art education at the Kunstgewerbeschule Zurich from 1953 to 1955, followed by the architecture and painting department at the Werkakademie (now the University of Kassel) from 1955 to 1958.
During his time at the Werkakademie, Bächer was heavily influenced by the abstract-expressionist style of his teacher, Arnold Bode, and only produced abstract paintings until 1965. Bächer shifted towards figurative painting after 1965 and his works became increasingly political and socially critical as he was inspired by the 1968 protest movement. He received a Swiss federal art scholarship in 1965 and 1966 and was recognized as a "flesh painter." In the 1970s, Bächer's landscape paintings were temporarily inspired by the development of his hometown, Opfikon.
Bächer gained prominence in the 1960s as a critical realist painter. His spray technique expressive works received limited recognition in Switzerland, but his breakthrough came with the satirical painting "Jedermann" in 1969. Many of his works from this time were inspired by the German realism of the 1920s and depicted a colorful, critical view of the consumer and excess society. In the late 1970s, Bächer focused on the destruction of his surrounding landscape and produced landscape paintings.
When Bächer returned to figure paintings in 1980, his socially engaged content took a back seat, and he depicted life as a world theater using different image tools. He combined mythological and Christian symbols with real figures and combined realistic with stylized representations. In his later works, the round, fleshy figures became more reduced and stylized. Bächer founded the ZEF group in 1991 and was also a founding member of the Produzentengalerie in Zurich.
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