Born in 1919 in Eggendorf am Wagram (Lower Austria), Johann was the apprentice for a master-baker before being recruited during the Second World War and taken prisoner by the Americans. At his liberation, he followed in his father’s footsteps at the head of the family farm, suffering, however, from hallucinations starting in 1957, he was committed to a psychiatric clinic. In 1981, he joined the Haus der Künstler and began his impressive production.
Fischer, who died in 2008, only used pencil and color pencils. His palette, at first composed of gray and brown tones, grew considerably at the beginning of the 1990s. The rather simple subjects of his beginnings became progressively complex, leading to illustrated stories in which the real and the imaginary constantly intermingle. Courteous, methodical, Johann drew every morning and followed his signature with his occupation:
Künstler ! (Artist!). For many years, he was, with Walla, Hauser and Tschirtner, one of the four leading artists of the Gugging. With numerous articles dedicated to him, his creations appear in the world’s greatest collections of Art Brut, including David Bowie’s.
leben in art brut, bildraum bodensee, hannah rieger's collection, from july 14th to august 16th, 2018.
do the write thing 2: read between the lines, christian berst art brut gallery, from april 26th to june 2nd, 2018.
heterotopias : architectural dwellings, curator : matali crasset, christian berst art brut gallery, from december 2nd, 2017 to january 20th, 2018.
living in art brut, 123 works from the hannah rieger collection, museumkrems, krems an der donau, austria, from september 8th to october 26th, 2017.
gugging! the crazed in the hot zone, christian berst art brut gallery, from september 2nd to october 14th, 2017, paris.
"graphomanies brutes", claire margat, art press 2, n°49, august, september, october 2018, pp.52-56.
l'art brut, under the direction of martine lusardy, citadelles & mazenod, paris, 2018.
exhibition catalogue, leben in art brut, hannah rieger collection, bildraum bodensee, seestraße, 2018.
exhibition catalogue, do the write thing 2 : read between the lines, christian berst art brut ed., paris, 2018.
revue multitudes, n°69, winter, 2017.
exhibition catalogue, heterotopias : architectural dwellings, christian berst art brut ed., paris, 2017.
exhibition catalogue, living in art brut, 123 works from the hannah rieger collection, museumkrems, bad vöslau, austria, 2017.
exhibition catalogue, gugging! the crazed in the hot zone, christian berst art brut ed., paris, 2017.
outsider art source book : art brut, folk art, outsider art, raw vision ltd, 2009.
blug - gugging, ein ort der kunst, christian brandstätter verlag, vienna, 2006.
collecting madness, outsider art from the dammann collection, thomas röske, bettina brand-claussen, gerhard dammann, wunderhorn, heidelberg, 2006.
l’art brut, lucienne peiry, flammarion, « tout l’art », paris, 1997, 2006.
animales, susi brunner, gallery / sammlung s. brunner, zurich, 2005.
exhibition catalogue, à corps perdu, abcd, une collection de l’art brut, pavillon des arts, 30 avril - 26 septembre 2004, paris musées, paris, 2004.
sovären das haus der künstler in gugging, braus, heidelberg, 2004.
l’art brut, l’art outsider et au-delà, john maizels, phaidon, paris, 2003.
l’art outsider, art brut et création hors normes au XXe siècle, colin rhodes, thames & hudson, « l’univers de l’art », paris, 2001.
abcd une collection d’art brut, arles, actes sud / abcd (paris), 2000.
l’aracine, art brut, musée d’art brut, neuilly-sur-marne, 1999.
art brut und psychiatrie, léo navratil, gugging, 1946-1986, brandstätter, vienna, 1999.
"art brut et psychiatrie", léo navratil, in raw vision n°15, 1996.
"johann fischer, michaela strebl, in fascicule de l‘art brut n°17, lausanne collection, lausanne, 1992.
die künstler aus gugging, léo navratil, medusa verlags gmbh, berlin, 1983.
- collection de l'Art brut, Lausanne (Switzerland)
- LaM, musée d'art moderne, d'art contemporain et d'art brut de Lille Métropole, Villeneuve d'Ascq (France)
- The Musgrave Kinley Outsider Art Collection, Manchester (Saint Pierre and Miquelon)
- Anthony Petullo Collection, Milwaukee (United States)
- Arnulf Rainer collection, Vienne (Austria)
- abcd collection, montreuil (France)
- Dammann collection, Bâle (Switzerland)
- Hannah Rieger collection, Vienne (Austria)
- Hervé Lancelin collection, Luxembourg (Luxembourg)
selective press review
- graphomanies brutes authors claire margat in art press, third quarter 2018.
- des œuvres singulières pour commencer une collection authors roxana azimi in le monde, january 29, 2018.
- gugging ! authors aurélie romanacce in l'oeil, october 2017.
- Annonce de l'exposition : Gugging, un foyer pour l'art brut authors in animula vagula, April 5 2006.