Ralph Schraivogel

Ralph Schraivogel was born in Lucerne in 1960 and lives in Zurich. He has devoted his career to designing posters for nearly a quarter century, and taught Design at Zurich’s School of Design and Berlin’s University of the Arts.

His posters illustrate how he erases the difference between lettering and image: image becomes lettering, lettering becomes image. In other words, seeing and reading become one and the same while maintaining a precarious balance. The visual environment conveys the content, not the visual or factual information as is otherwise customary. His posters are the visual exploration of space and effect which convey their stunning message through the suggestion of what is new and different. For more than 20 years his works have been a source of optical wonder: collapsing perspectives, typographical alienation, ornaments, complex overlapping and fading – each challenging and fascinating the observer.

Since 1983 Ralph Schraivogel has created posters and programme magazines for Zurich’s repertory cinema “Filmpodium”. He has worked regularly for the Zurich Museum of Design since 1984. He was awarded assignments from many other institutions including the Kunsthaus Zurich Museum of Fine Arts, Theater am Neumarkt, the International Jazz Festival Zurich, the Schaffhausen Jazz Festival, the Solothurn Literature Days and Zurich’s African Film Festival Cinemafrica.

His maverick designs have made him into one of the forerunners of a new generation of designers. He has been the recipient of top awards at numerous competitions at home and abroad.

He was a Gold Medal winner at the Warsaw Biennial (1994), Moscow Biennial, Golden Bee (1994), Chaumont Poster Festival (1997), Ningbo International Poster Exhibition (2001, 2003), Art Directors Club New York (2003), Hong Kong International Poster Triennial (2007), and Teheran Poster Biennial (2007).

He received the Grand Prix at the 1998 Brno Biennial and the five-star Designers Award Osaka in 2006.

One-man shows were held in Warsaw (1996), Ankara (1996), Osaka (1997), Chaumont (1998), Berne (1998), Brno (2002), Teheran (2002), Paris (2003), Zurich (2004) and Ljubljana (2009).

His posters are featured in a number of permanent collections including New York’s MoMA.

Ralph Schraivogel is a member of Alliance Graphique Internationale (AGI).

Posters by Ralph Schraivogel