About the Swiss photographer, René GROEBLI (b. 1927, in Zurich)

René GROEBLI is a photographer and trained documentary cameraman. He ran a photo studio for industrial and advertising photography and a company for color photography, dye transfer and color lithographs and also realized free artistic photo essays.
After starting an apprenticeship as a photographer, briefly attending the specialist photography class under the direction of Hans FINSLER and Alfred Willimann, and training as a documentary film cameraman, he worked as a photo reporter from 1949 and carried out assignments for the Zürcher Woche and later for the London agency Black Star in Africa and the Middle East. The pictures were published in Life and Picture Post magazines. In 1949 he published his first small photo portfolio, 'Magic of the Rails', with his own publishing company 'Kubus'; his second illustrated book, 'Das Auge der Liebe', published in 1954 by 'Turnus'. Together with the Swiss photographers Werner BISCHOF, Robert FRANK, Gotthard SCHUH and Sabine WEISS, René GROEBLI was represented with a picture in the exhibition 'The Family of Man', curated by Edward STEICHEN, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. With the end of commercial photography, he returned to his free color and black-and-white photographic essays.

Photo books by René GROEBLI

'Magie der Schiene' (1949, 2009); 'Das Auge der Liebe' (1954, 2014, 2017, 2020); 'Variations' (1965); 'Variations 2' (1971); 'Fantasies' (1978); 'Die Muschel' (1984, 2020); 'Visions. Fotografien 1946-1991' (1992); 'NY Melancholia' (1999); 'Irland' (2000); 'The Eye of Love' (2002); 'Rail Magic' (2006, 2017); 'Beryl Chen' (2015); 'Early Work' (2015); 'London 1949' (2016); 'Nudes' (2016); 'New York 1978' (2017); 'Color Work' (2018); 'Werkverzeichnis' (2019, by Hans-Michael Koetzle); 'The Magic Eye' (2020)

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  • 1951: Federal grant
    1953: Prix d'encouragement
    1960: Prize and medal for 'Exemplary ad design for Bayer'
    1966: Graphic Artist Prize of the German Commercial Graphic Artists
    1974: Award of Excellence Typography Type Directors Club, NY (USA)
    1983: Honorary membership in the Swiss Photographers' Association
    2006: Photo 06, Lifetime Award
Exhibitions (a selection)
  • 1949: Anliker-Keller, Bern
    1955: Gallery 16, Zurich
    1966: Gallery 58, Rapperswil
    1978 Les Rencontres de la Photographie, Arles; Portfolio Gallery, Lausanne; Images Gallery, New York
    1979: Gallery Neufeld, Au SG; Gallery Contact, Bordeaux; Limbach Gallery, Cologne; FNAC-Etoile, Paris; Dieuzadie Gallery, Toulouse
    1984: Gallery Poseidon, Zurich
    1985: Djélal Gallery, Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, France
    1991: Tarazona 91, Spain
    1992: Center de la Photographie, Geneva; Mois de la Photo, Paris; Gallery Renee Ziegler, Zurich
    1993: Cottbus, Brandenburg Art Collection, Cottbus
    1995: La Chapelle de Penitenciers, La Ciotat, France
    1998: Gallery Camera Obscura, Paris
    1999: 'Motion - Experiment - Vision', Retrospective Kunsthaus Zurich; Swiss Foundation for Photography, Zurich
    2001: Gallery Commercio, Zurich
    2002: Nikon Image House, Kusnacht; Paris Photo; Fondation Koenig, Zurich
    2003: Gallery Stasia Hutter, Basel; Robert Koch Gallery, San Francisco; Gallery De Artis, Zug
    2005: Gallery in focus, Cologne
    2006: Camera and Photo Museum, Leipzig; 'Retrospective', Andy Jllien Gallery, Zurich
    2008: 'Retrospective', Aplanat Gallery, Hamburg
    2009: 'Retrospective', Hiltawsky Gallery, Berlin; Gallery in focus, Cologne
    2012: Fondation Auer Ory, Hermance; Gallery Carry on SA, Geneva
    2014: Zurich, Photobastei Zurich
    2016: Kilchberg, picture hall
    2017: 'My first 90 years', Johanna Breede PHOTO ART; Bildhalle, Zurich
    2020: Bildhalle, Zurich; in focus gallery, Cologne