How Swiss designers once shaped the face of Paris

In the 1950s, many Swiss designers moved from their homes to Paris, and the department stores, agencies and publishing houses they designed still characterise the city to this day…

Peter Knapp, Jean Widmer, Adrian Frutiger and Albert Hollenstein might be relatively unknown outside the design scene, but their works have influenced the image of Paris as a city of fashion, art and avant-garde. In the post-War years, many technically skilled Swiss craftsmen and typographers emigrated to the City of Light. In search of inspiration and exciting projects, ‘Les Suisses de Paris’ soon managed to occupy key positions in the creative industry and shape the new face of the city with their work. The spectrum ranged from new logos, such as that for the Galeries Lafayette, to magazine covers and orientation systems for museums and subways. At the Museum of Design in Zurich, a new exhibition dedicated to the influence of the Paris Swiss on French and European design history will be held until 19 March 2017. 

Photos: Museum of Design / © ZHdK

The exhibition ‘Les Suisses de Paris’ can be seen at the Museum of Design in Zurich until 19 March 2017.