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Collection Richard Hersberger


Altherr/Weiss is a design collective based in Zurich/London. Their work combines creative direction with design consulting to create solutions bridging art, science, technology and tradition. Altherr/Weiss cherishes a working practice that is interdependent and collaborative, seeking to actively involve the industries, crafts and satellite designers to collaborate in the on-going realization of work. Multi-disciplined, we thrive on the synergy of different talents and professions, and the scope of our projects range from film and animation to product design and architectural installations. Since April 2017 we have opened a space at Lagerstrasse 102, Zurich where we combine an interdisciplinary studio practice with a workshop and gallery space. From April till May 2017, we undertook an extensive archiving project of Mr. Hersberger Carpet Collection. The archiving consisted of digitalizing the systematics in excel files, inventory and high-resolution studio photography.


Richard Hersberger

At the end of the fifties, I began to collect nomad carpets, particularly from southern Iran and Morocco, I found it intriguing that these carpets were reminiscent of Kandinsky and Klee paintings, even though they had of course been woven much earlier and independently of these artists. I believed them to be the natural artistic expression of the nomads. As a former interior designer, graphic designer and owner of a furniture store, I appreciate nomad and peasant carpets which were individually created for the weavers’ own use. They are extremely valuable both in practical and artistic sense. They give character to our living space which otherwise contains almost exclusively mass produced furnishings, among them handmade carpets that have been produced in workshops based on a template. Nomad carpets are not simply ‘goods’, but evidence of a culture which is increasingly being displaced by modern technology and civilization. Fineness of weave or good condtition are not as important to me as originilaty and powerful drawing, palette and structure. Whether the deyes are natural or chemical is of secondary importance, I am fascinated by their cheerful and carefree effect: ” Seulement pour le plaisir des yeux”, as the Moroccans say. Richard Hersberger, “Berber Tribal Carpets and Weavings from Morocco”

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