Rolf Sachs

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Rolf Sachs (born 10 August 1955) is a German-born artist/designer.

Copyright: rolf sachs fun c 'tion. Photo by Byron Slater
Copyright: rolf sachs fun c 'tion. Photo by Byron Slater

Family Background[edit]

Rolf Sachs was born in Lausanne, Switzerland, to Anne-Marie Faure and Gunter Sachs, the accomplished German industrialist, photographer, author and socialite descended from the well-known Sachs-Opel industrial families.

Rolf Sachs went to school at Le Rosey, Rolle/Gstaad and the Lyceum Alpinum, Zuoz. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Menlo College, Menlo Park, California. He is married to Iranian born author Maryam Sachs; they have three children Philipp, Frederik and Roya Sachs.

Art and Design[edit]

Accomplished artist and designer, Rolf Sachs is renowned for his distinctive multi-disciplinary approach. His work moves freely between art and design, objects, spaces and visual medium. He is renowned for surprising audiences – encouraging them to question preconceptions and view objects from a different perspective.

Sachs has had a passion for modern and conceptual art since his childhood. A purist by education as well as nature, he has been heavily influenced by art that surrounded him from an early age. It was not until the mid-Eighties that he started working professionally in the creative world, setting up his studio in London in the mid-Nineties.

Sachs’ work was initially inspired by the principles of minimalism. Restrained decoration, deconstructed right angles and sharp corners were the defining characteristics of his work, predominantly made from felt and solid wood – natural materials with a ‘soul’.

His work has progressed over the years, becoming more experimental and conceptual and therefore not as easily definable; he is inspired just as easily from a museum as from a hardware store or physics laboratory.

Sachs creates work that draws upon the subconscious and aims to gain access to the collective memory. The common thread that runs through his work is his passion for experimentation and invention, which drives him to challenge the applications of materials and the use of everyday objects. By removing them from their normal context, he redefines their substance and function, injecting them with character and creating powerful, emotional connections. He thrives on the unconventional and the unexpected whilst encouraging sensory interaction and emotional reactions.

Rolf Sachs has exhibited worldwide at major design venues and exhibitions including the MAKK Museum in Cologne, Galerie von Bartha in St Moritz, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, gabrielle ammann// gallery at Design Miami Basel, Phillips de Pury & Company New York, Monica Sprüth Cologne and Faggionato Fine Arts in London. Some of his major set designs include the Faust opera which debuted at Wiesbaden Staatstheater and was turned into a ballet, debuting at the Monte Carlo Ballet and touring globally. In March 2009, Sachs completed the set design for Vincenzo Bellini’s “Norma” at the Opera de Monte Carlo.

Rolf and his wife Maryam collaborated on a photographic project entitled The Wild Emperor where a stationary camera, over a period of a year captured, every 10.5 minutes, the Wild Kaiser range of mountains outside their house in Bavaria.

Business Background[edit]

After completing his studies Rolf Sachs worked for his family’s business as a specialist and investor in the ‘alternative’ investment world. He is still active in the financial world and holds a number of advisory and board-level positions, and has a family office in Switzerland.

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