Sisi Bolliger 1916-2010

Sisi Lang was long on 1st August 1916 in Reiden as the younger of two daughters and grew up in Uetikon at the lake of Zurich. Her father, Robert Jacob Lang, worked as a journalist and writer at home and was taking care of the household of the family, as the mother, Friedl Lang-Keck, a folk theater author was suffering from severe depressions and had to be admitted to mental hospitals several times.

Sisi Lang trained as a photographer by Hans Finsler at the Zurich School of Applied Arts, graduated and worked in Finslers studio. In 1939 she married Hans Bolliger, son of a carpenter, who had made an apprentiship ​​at the bookstore Dr. Oprecht, qwhich was a meeting point for many emigrants, where he had met Carola Guideon-Welker, who introduced him to representatives of the art avant garde like Arp, Max Ernst, Hugo Ball, Claire Goll, Chagall, Chiacometti etc. She ran the household and often hosted the illustrious guests of her man, while she was treated as a marginal figure and excluded from conversations. 1943 and 1948 her sons Peter and Andres were born. In 1951, her husband, who in the meantime had worked in a publishing house, the Central Library and the Kunsthaus Zurich, moved to Bern to join the auction house Klippstein and Kornfeld, whereas she stayed wirth her sons in Zurich.

As single mother Sisi Bolliger-Lang now did a number of different jobs to earn her live and the one of her sons. She worked in the darkrooms of two different employers. And she helped every day, to put a paralyzed woman in a bathtub and to take her out, she sewed business curtains in a interior design shop, she tailored and knitted for herselve, her boys and for acquaintances clothes, she helped by the hour in a boutique and produced necklaces of colored beans that were sold there. The couple divorced in the early fifties. While there are early, rare dated works of her, there are no works created during the 1950s to the 1970s – her time was exclusively spent to earn a living and take care of her educational responsibilities. During her whole lifetime – she worked far beyond her age of eighty – she tailored and knitted all her dresses herself and she created for herself several pieces of jewelry as well.

When the grown up sons left her, she started to spend her time doing creative works. Around 1980, when her first grandchild was born, she was happy and started doing artistic textile works, adopting the techniques of Mola and embroidery. This all started with the subtle embroidery entitled "A happy summer". Later, she used almost exclusively the technique of colorpencil-drawings. She spent hours, days and weeks on these drawings and she described this activity as a sort of a puzzle she had to assemble and that she felt always surprized herself about what would arise in each case. If she was not satisfied with the result of her drawings, she started again and continued to work on them.

Her work was never exhibited and only very few persons new about. She presented her drawings as birthday-gifts to her relatives. She lived very modestly, with an exemplarly positive life attitude, always wide awake, interested and curious, she had open eyes and ears for all people she met. In June 2010, she developed an infection and had to be hospitalized. With her positive attitude and her open nature she created immediately a very good relation with all the nurses. An intestinal perforation did require surgery, which was successful, but her kidneys failed and therefore she decided against dialysis and for the termination of treatment, and was moved to a private room where she died three days later, on 4 July 2010.

After her death, there were numerous drawings. On her bedside table were even some IT-books: although she had never used a computer, she was keen to know the technology with which people of her environment were concerned.

the photographs of the joung photographer Sisi Bolliger
https://www.pinterest.com/artbrutsammler/sisi-bolliger-art-brut-aussenseiterkunst-outsider-/

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