Max Bill

(Winterthur, 1908 – Berlin, 1994)


Max Bill was a Swiss graphic artist, industrial designer, architect, sculptor, and painter, primarily important for his sophisticated, disciplined advertising designs.

Bill’s early ambition was to become a silversmith, but the work of the architect Le Corbusier influenced him to study architecture at the Bauhaus

In 1929, he started working as an architect in Zurich. From 1932 to 1937, he became a member of the French artistic group Abstraction-Création. In 1937, he participated in the V CIAM (Congrès Internationaux d’Architecture Moderne), and in the same year he became a member of Alliaz, the union of modern Swiss artists. He was in touch with some of the most important artists and architects of the XX century, such as Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Charles Eames, Piet Mondrian, Hans Art, and Max Ernst.

In 1951, together with Inge Scholl and Otl Aicher, he founded the design institute Hochschule für Gestaltung at Ulma. He is one of the most important exponents of Concrete Art, and was able to elaborate a strictly coherent language, whose geometric structure uses a logical matrix to organize simplified forms.

He won several prizes and awards: the Gran Prix of the Triennale di Milano (1951); he became a member of the American Institute of Architects (1964), of the National Swiss Council (1967-1971), and of the Academy of Arts of Berlin (1988); he won the Imperial Prize of Japan in 1993; in 1994, he gained an honoris causa graduation at the Swiss Higher Institute.

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