Herbert Matter was only after one thing, in the typically modest Swiss manner: creating good, relevant work. Whether on paper, as photos, on film or with the design of an exhibition was not important. Self-promotion was never in his thoughts and thus it is not surprising that his body of work – from his time as a student to his death – is archived almost completely, while very little is known of the man Herbert Matter himself.


This is the starting point of “The Visual Language of Herbert Matter”. The goal is to create a diverse and colourful portrait of the life and work of Matter, through a montage of clips, images and other work of the artist as well as interviews with contemporaries, Matter’s son and fellow artists.

Our intent: to not only tell the story of this impressive life, but to also situate Matter in art history and thereby figure out and acknowledge his importance. Not only was Matter at the important cultural hotspots of the twentieth century at the right time, he also shaped them through his visual language.


Doc 80’ / 50’

Director: Reto Caduff

Produced 2011

Produced by PiXiU FILMS & SRF/3sat 2010/11