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Swiss American Historical Society Review

Swiss American Historical Society Review

Article Title

Iris von Roten as Artist

Keywords

Iris von Roten, women authors, artists

Abstract

Introduction to Blumenblicke Zurich: eFeF Verlag, 1993.

Iris vonRoten (1917-1990) was a painter who was driven by an inner need to express her aesthetic vision with unrnediated directness. In contrast to her published work, her paintings are not an invitation to public discourse, but to the enjoyment of the world of flowers in their various forms and colors. She wanted to create a hundred works of art before her oeuvre was to be shown in public. When eye problems prevented her from painting at the end of the 1980s, she had created fifty-six works in oil and about twenty on paper had been created. She still thought of an exhibit, but now she lacked the vigor and energy needed for such an undertaking. On 11 September 1990 Iris von Roten died. She explicitly did not want a memorial service. Peter von Roten and I decided, therefore, to make an exhibit of Iris' paintings and to issue a catalog in order to commemorate her by the lively and magnificent flowers of her paintings. The death of Peter von Roten in August 1991 crossed these plans. But in the fall of 1993 it became a reality: Forty paintings of Iris von Roten were shown to a wider public in Brig by the Kunstverein (Art Society) of the Upper Valais. A further exhibit was prepared in Zurich at the renowned Gallery of Roswitha Haftmann for Spring 1998. The published book Blumenblicke resulted from the planned catalog. Selecting only paintings of flowers took into account that Iris von Roten pursued that genre above all with masterful originality. On the one hand the often repeated motif of flowers documents a lifelong passion of Iris von Roten, on the other the intensely colorful and unconventionally elegant compositions testify to Iris von Roten' s artistic talent.

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