George Gessler
George Gessler - Ihr Besuch im Atelierhaus
Impressionen aus dem Atelierhaus von George Gessler

His Art

Report by v. U. Bonvin
after a conversation with GeGe

In the morning I like to do "manual work": Working in the studio like mixing paint, drawing, sketching, or, as a way to relax, doing repair and carpentry work on my old house. Although lunch cannot be described as opulent, the coffee break afterwards is of greatest importance to me. I’ll sit in the “Türkenstübli” with a glass of cognac, leaf through art and travel books and dream the old dream of a studio in Paris and a second one on the Cote d'Azur. Colourful images, visions; memories take shape from the smoke of the pipe and – dissolve again. What remains is, despite dreams unlived, a satisfied elderly painter in an old house, in a middle-class village, in a country with strict boundaries. The cosmopolitan city and the Mediterranean life linger on in my mind.

GeGe beim Malen der "Boules-Spieler"In the afternoon, the studio work begins. This usually lasts until one work phase is completed. That could be ten hours or just two. If things don’t go as planned, if there is a “knot”, if discontent arises, if struggling serves no purpose, I’ll put aside my brush and go for a walk.

In my pictures I always stick to a particular topic. Often landscapes, then again religious themes, noise, traffic, visions of the future.

Usually I work late into the night until a certain phase is finished. Then I withdraw once more to the "Türkenstübli", open a bottle of wine and read; fiction, education, books on Eastern religions. At about one o'clock I go to bed.

In Peshawar hat uns eine rein orientalische Welt empfangen.In previous years, I have often lived abroad for prolonged periods of time. Thanks to study visits in India, Pakistan, the Sahara and Morocco my love of the Islamic world were awakened, my knowledge and understanding deepened. I was on the move - and I was searching.
The more I found, the more intense my search became: be that the mysterious Timbuktu, which was sealed off to all Christian people until very recently, be that the fabled Eldorado, where mankind's favorite metal is hidden, or the hidden Atlantis – the unseen island kingdom on the ocean floor? Or was it only the search for myself?

Now I have settled down. Once a year, however, I still go to the Provence for one month and during the summer holidays I teach watercolour classes for young people in Sanary, near Toulon. Working with young people makes me happy and at the same time represents a real challenge. It’s a casual lifestyle; sleeping in a large tent and the communal meals often lead to interesting conversations. In addition, serious and hard work is being done.

I like the simple life. I've lived an alternative lifestyle with my family, even before this term became well known. In 1958, we lived without electricity for a long time whilst we were transforming a small grotto (wine cellar) in the Maggia valley into a modest home. GeGe Georg Gessler - Ein Ausschnitt aus Leben und WerkMy sons completed their homework by the light of kerosene lamps. Cooking was done on the fireplace in front of the house; the water pipe leading to our house (a garden hose), was our only luxury.

U. Bonvin in:
GeGe Georg Gessler
Ein Ausschnitt aus Leben und Werk

George Gessler - Ein Leben in Bildern

by Bernhard Schneider

Art book 120 pages,
Format 23 X 31 cm,
about 70 illustrations, some of which are large format

Price: 68 CHF
ISBN: 978-3-9523203-4-1

in our online Shop or
Buch: George Gessler - Ein Leben in Bildern
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