Saturday, July 12, 2014

This is SAQA Europe/Middle East: Switzerland

Marlis Egger

I was born and raised in Zurich, but have lived for the past 26 years in Lugano/Ticino (Italian part of Switzerland) where I share my life with my husband and a cat (soon to be two).

I’m a fiber artist and the founder and organizer of TexArtAcademy, an international meeting point for textile artists here in Ticino. I have also served as Art Director at QuiltArtLugano, Switzerland’s first Quilt Festival.

Le Fil Rouge #4 (2008), part of a series of 5 quilts,
12x12 cm, matted

Le Fil Rouge #8 (2014), 30x30 cm

About 25 years ago, I discovered patchwork and quilting. Back then, at least here in Ticino, it was all about traditional quilts, “little flower” fabrics and quilts made from patterns. I found it boring to know in advance how my quilt would look like once it was finished. But I started anyway to learn the basics of patchwork.

Lines and Circles (2013, 73 x 71 cm

A trip to California changed everything and a completely new world opened up for me. I came back with a bag full of books, fabrics and ideas and started to work without templates, just out of my gut.

Only recently, after many colorful years (I loved to work with strong colors), I finally discovered what makes me really happy: to use color sparingly. I love neutrals, different shades of white, gray and black. I often use red as accent color. These are the colors I am surrounded with directly and every day: clothing, furniture, home decor … and yes, also the cats are gray ;-). These colors not only have a physical and emotional effect, but really influence my color perception and the way I use color in my art.

My work usually starts with white cloth which I then alter using dye and paint. I also work with new technologies, for example digital photography, photo processing software and inkjet printing. They give me the opportunity to combine my love for photography and textiles. The result is unique pieces of art.

Scribble & Splat #1+2 Diptych (2014), 44x38 cm + 44x31 cm

These original designs are also a starting point to create abstract fiber art. I incorporate different materials, mostly a variety of fabrics, painted canvas, sometimes even paper.

My motto is “less is more” – in color and in design. A simple and well balanced piece is a piece that speaks from my soul.

My website and blog:

The TexArtAcademy website:


  1. Hi Marliss,
    It is so good to hear about your work after meeting you now and then at FOQ. I will enjoy going to your blog and website to learn more.
    Isn't it amazing how black, white and grey work become very exciting with a touch of red?
    Sandy in the UK

  2. An interesting post Marlis. I have been really enjoying Le Fil Rouge series and can't wait to meet Ayla - wonder how Yaris is going to react?