Biography Willy Wimpfheimer
Willy Wimpfheimer grew up in Zurich with Franco-German parents.
After attending school, Wimpfheimer met Willy Stadler, a sculpture restorer, through some artist friends.
Aged 17, he began a four-year apprenticeship as a stone sculptor with him as well as continuing his studies at Zurich School of Applied Arts.
Influenced by his somewhat conservative master, the apprentice was initially interested in figurative sculpture, particularly the oeuvre of Maillol.
In 1960, a year after the end of his apprenticeship, the young sculptor found a job at the studio of established artist Hans Aeschbacher.
This environment had a positive effect on Wimpfheimer, steering his sculptural development towards the geometric constructivism.
1964 he started out on his own with s few commissions for his work. In 1965 came the first acquisition of his work by the Canton of Zurich and 1967 his first public commission for a schoolhouse in Stettbach, Zurich (A piece containing five stone stele-like figures).
From 1968 on the arch began to replace the earlier static monoliths. In 1969 he had his first solo exhibition at the City Art chamber at Strauhof, Zurich; and he received several awards and scholarships.
In the 70s and 80s, numerous art works were purchased by the city and canton of Zurich.
1976 the artist spent six months in Genoa, and in 1978 three months in New York. From the mid-70s Wimpfheimer began to prefer working with steel and iron.
From the 80s the artist began using lengths of metal made from iron or steel rods.
Commissions include fountains for the Institute of Special Education in Zurich (1983) and the Home for The Deaf and Blind in Langnau am Albis (1991-92).
The most recent piece of commissioned work is an iron sculpture for the train station in Birmensdorf (1993–96).
Since the beginning of the new millennium he has worked in bronze; wall reliefs, and sculptures in various dimensions up to large-scale pieces.
Willy Wimpfheimer lives and works in Zürich and Suvereto, Italy.