Between 1965 and 1971, Mani Matter appeared in the programme of the Bernese Troubadours. From back left to the front: Fritz Widmer, Mani Matter, Jacob Stickelberger, Ruedi Krebs, Markus Traber and Bernhard Stirnemann.
Photo: private, Ruedi Krebs.
Mani Matter (1936–1972)
‘Mani Matter (1936–1972)’ is back at the Landesmuseum Zurich. The exhibition, which explores the life and work of the popular Bernese chansonnier, was a big success in Zurich and Schwyz and at the Bern Historical Museum. From 26 March 2013, visitors to the Landesmuseum Zurich can rediscover documents from Mani Matter’s legacy. The exhibition covers key stages in his life, with the help of letters, discs and much more. All the texts as well as numerous film documents and interviews are also accessible via iPad.
Songwriter Mani Matter (1936–1972) is a revered figure in Switzerland and is worshipped across all generations. The Bernese writer left behind a wealth of songs which remain top sellers to this day. Rock and pop versions of his songs continue to be produced, university seminars are held on him, and music lessons in schools without his songs would be unthinkable.
Mani Matter is not just a much loved songwriter, however, but also a top-ranking poet. With his creative flair and witty ideas, his powers of observation and depth of thought and his mastery of language and form, he can be compared to authors such as Christian Morgenstern, Kurt Tucholsky and Erich Kästner.
On first hearing, Mani Matter’s songs seem somewhat effortless, slick and harmless. If you pay closer attention, however, you will discover in Mani Matter’s songs, diaries and letters (‘Rumpelbuch’, ‘Sudelhefte’) a critical citizen, an intellectual and an educated thinker.
The temporary exhibition at the Swiss National Museum in Zurich showcases these various facets of Mani Matter’s character. Five themed islands, arranged around his most famous songs (Der Eskimo, Bim Coiffeur, Yr Isebahn, Dr Parkingmeter and Arabisch) display a selection of texts, photographs and other items from his legacy. Numerous audio and media stations enable visitors to immerse themselves in the songs, poetry and way of thinking of this wonderful songwriter.