St Moritz Art Masters kicks off today, a gentle wind down from the energy of the Jazz festival, the Jazz brunches and all that paddle boarding. This year the theme is India and the Walk of Art links a number of hot spots throughout the Engadin valley – exploring regional artists such as Mili Weber through to international artists. I love the fact that the art is dotted all over the place, from churches to private homes and woodlands.
I decided to start off with Mili Weber’s house, her micro view of the wild flowers turned into little child-like spirits is quite unique. Stepping into the house she lived in for 30 years alone is like stepping into a mixture of Grims Fairy Tales and Hansel and Gretel.
Pretty much every surface has been painted on. There are woodland paintings of magical little scenes of wild flowers which turn into children. I was struck at how those little children’s faces all resemble photos of Mili as a child. In fact as she grew older she still had a child-like quality about her features.
We were taken through the house (you need to book a visit in advance and leave your camera firmly in your bag once you have gone through the front door!)
Each room took you a step closer into Mili’s extraordinary world. The thing that took my breath away was a castle shaped dolls house which Mili’s brother adapted for her and which is filled with little objects, each one hand made, which depict everything from Venitian styles to Red Indians. Mili hardly travelled in the physical sense, however she most certainly traveled in her mind. This dolls house took her 40 years to complete.
She lived in one of the most stunning landscapes possible, surrounded by soaring mountains and deep blue lakes and she painted the minutest details only. It almost seemed like she was so busy studying and painting the tiny details behind the beauty that she never got around to documenting the larger picture.
Mili died in the early seventies so people here still remember this bright eyed, white haired woman who would walk through town with her favourite three teddy bears stuffed in a ruck sack. As I walked back into town I was struck at how Peter Pan like she was, a really happy soul who never wanted to grow up, perfectly content examining and painting every minute detail of her landscape.