Born 1944 in Reconvilier, Switzerland
Based in Carouge, Switzerland
Graduated from the École des Beaux-Arts et des Arts Décoratifs in Geneva in 1965. Worked as a graphic designer at an advertising agency before beginning to make animated films with two friends. Flight of Icarus (1974) received numerous awards at film festivals around the world. While continuing to make films he studied Chinese at the University of Geneva, after which he studied at a university in Shanghai from 1983 to 1984. Upon returning to Switzerland he completed 78rpm (1985), putting his energies back into making animated films. Romance (2011), a co-production with the National Film Board of Canada, won numerous awards, including Best Animated Short at the Genie Awards.
His latest work, Erlking, is based on a cast of three characters including a father who sets off on a horse to have his son seen by a doctor, the son, and the Erlking, king of the fairies, who stands in their way. As the story progresses the roles of these three characters shift complexly so that it becomes unclear who is the victim and who the offender; who is right and who is wrong. The chaotic, labyrinthine world is depicted with Schwizgebel’s characteristic screen textures reminiscent of oil paintings.