Born in 1953 in Vevey, Switzerland, Krähenbühl attended Art School near his hometown in Lausanne. After 2 years of school, he spent a few years in Barcelona and Paris before establishing his studio in Romainmôtier, Switzerland. He was intrigued with different types of metals; His sculptures experimented with the changes that occur to the varying materials over time.
The turning point in his work coincided with meeting Dr. Rolf Gotthardt, a specialist in specific alloys at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. Françoise Jaunin wrote “A collaboration ensued which brought the artist, between science and poetry, sensitivity and monumentality, gravity and weightlessness, to push the limits of materials bringing out the movements and sounds from the depths of the earth.”
Krahenbuhl challenges the viewer by playing on the physical properties of his material. The contrast between monumentality and fragility, along with sound and movement, take on primary roles while showing the possibilities of expression through material. Joan-Francesc Ainaud stated “Etienne Krähenbühl’s sculptures offer us a new and fascinating reflection on ourselves and our surroundings.”
Since the mid-1970s, Etienne Krähenbühl has exhibited his work in solo and group shows in Switzerland, Spain, France, Lebanon and the United States. Among the many distinctions received, Krähenbühl was awarded the Edouard Maurice Sandoz Foundation Award in 2009.
He lives and works in Sarraz, Switzerland.