Christoph Gossweiler
Peinture, vert olive (Painting, Olive Green), 2008

  • Christoph Gossweiler (Hüttlingen, 1950)
  • Peinture, vert olive (Painting, Olive Green), 2008
  • Acrylic on canvas, 135 x 154 cm
  • Acquired with the support of Circuit, espace d’art contemporain, Lausanne, 2011
  • Inv. 2011-199
  • © Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne

A self-taught painter, Christoph Gossweiler began his career in the mid-1970s, adopting the practice of seriality that played an important role, especially in minimalist art and in conceptual art. Also evident in his work is the influence of Zurich concrete art. Gossweiler developed a style of painting based on the subdivision of the pictorial surface or logic-based variations of geometrical forms. He also produced monochrome works.

This work, which is presented without a stretcher, was created for a joint exhibition in 2008, La chute d’eau, celebrating ten years of activity of Circuit, an artist-run space in  Lausanne. The artists were invited to explore the theme of the waterfall, the subject of a poster left by the previous occupants of the exhibition space, and the background to Marcel Duchamp’s installation Given: 1. The Waterfall, 2. The Illuminating Gas… (1946–66, Philadelphia Museum of Art), a photograph of the Forestay waterfall at Chexbres in Switzerland. Gossweiler chose to contribute Peinture, vert olive, selecting it from the model of a solo exhibition planned for 2002 but never held.

The work doesn’t offer any clues to its subject. It provides only objective information concerning the medium (‘peinture’) and colour (‘vert olive’). Visitors are thus encouraged to read the green form for itself. The shape is formed by offcuts of sticker sheets for miniature cars on a normalised scale of 1:43, which the artist found in a model-making shop and transposed back into a scale of 1:1, including the paper background. This explains the unusual format and slightly off-kilter shape, which results from its original position on the sheet of stickers.


6 Einzelausstellungen, exh. cat. Bern, Galerie Lydia Megert, 1978.