Robert Walser Foundation Bern

Robert Walser Foundation Bern

The Robert Walser Foundation Bern is responsible for the Robert Walser Center. Recognized by Swiss federal law, the Carl Seelig Foundation, which was established in Zurich in 1966, supports the preservation, research and dissemination of Robert Walser’s work.

Board of Trustees: Dr. Victor Schmid, Bern, (President); Dr. iur. Claudia Bolla-Vincenz (Vice president), Bern; Dr. Anina Barandun, Zürich; Dr. Jacqueline Burckhardt, Zürich; Stefan Gerber, Solothurn; Beat Glur, Bern; Konrad Tobler, Bern; Prof. Dr. Peter Utz, Lausanne; Roger von Mentlen, Zürich.

In 2007, on the initiative of the Robert Walser Foundation, several public and private partners met in Bern to discuss the financial difficulties of the Robert Walser Foundation and to put it on sound footing and secure its long-term future. One condition was that the Foundation relocate from Zurich to Bern and open the Robert Walser Center in the Swiss capital.

The partners of the “Bernese Model” are: The City and Canton of Bern (Lottery Fund), Burgergemeinde Bern, Berner Kantonalbank, the Swiss Federal Office of Culture, the Swiss National Library, the Swiss Literary Archive and the City of Biel. 

The Robert Walser Foundation Bern

In 2004, the Robert Walser Foundation Zurich emerged from the Carl Seelig Foundation, whose rights and holdings it assumed. With the approval of the heirs of Carl Seeligthe writer, journalist and patron of the arts, who had died in Zurich on 15 February 1962—Dr. Elio Fröhlich, the executioner of Seelig’s estate, established The Carl Seelig Foundation on 23 December 1966.

In 1967, Mrs. Fanny Hegi-Walser transferred her ownership of Robert Walser’s literary estate to the Carl Seelig Foundation, with the request that all current and future holdings are to be stored and made available for scientific study through a Robert Walser Archive. The Archive, which also absorbed the Carl Seelig estate, was established in 1973, one year after Mrs. Hegi-Walser’s death.

In 1996, the Carl Seelig Foundation, at the wish of the writer’s many friends, initiated the formation of the Robert Walser Society. In 2004, it was first renamed the Robert Walser Foundation Zurich, and, after its eventual relocation to Bern in 2009, the Robert Walser Foundation Bern.

The Robert Walser Foundation Bern seeks and develops its own support projects. Unsolicited proposals or documents will not be considered or returned. 

Annual Reports (in German)