Alexis Schwarzenbach (*1971) is a historian, writer and curator. He read Modern History at Balliol College in Oxford and did his doctorate at the European University Institute in Florence. From 1998 until 2000 he edited photo books at Scalo Publishers (Zurich, Berlin, New York), then became a freelance writer and curator.
His books include works on Albert Einstein and Switzerland, the environmental organisation WWF and a cultural history of European monarchies since 1789. He curated exhibitions at Fotomuseum Winterthur, Museum Strauhof Zurich, Literaturhaus Berlin and the Swiss National Museum.
His field of research is cultural history with a special focus on design and business history. In Lucerne he leads a research project on the history of the Zurich silk industry since 1800. Specialised in fashionable textiles exported around the world, in the 19th century the silk industry became one of Switzerland’s most important economic sectors and remained relevant well beyond 1945.
In cooperation with the Swiss National Museum and the State Archives of the Canton of Zurich, the project safeguards the archives of over a dozen Zurich silk manufacturers. In addition to a book on the Zurich silk industry, the project includes an online database, Silk Memory. It provides researchers, teachers and contemporary designers with access to over 200 years of Zurich silk design, from Abraham to Weisbrod-Zurrer.
- 2015 – Professor, School of Art and Design, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
- 2012 – Lecturer, School of Art and Design, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts
- 2009 – 2011 Senior Curator, Swiss National Museum, Zurich
- 2004 – 2009 Freelance author and curator
- 2003 – 2004 Research Fellow, Kulturwissenschaftliches Institut, Essen
- 2002 – 2003 Research Fellow, Istituto Svizzero, Villa Maraini, Rome
- 2000 – 2002 Research Fellow, Oxford University Modern History Faculty
- 1998 – 2000 Editor, Scalo Publishers, Zurich, Berlin, New York
- 1997 PhD, European University Institute, Florence
- 1994 – 1997 European University Institute, Florence, Department of History and Civilisation
- 1994 Bachelor of Arts, Oxford University, Final Honour School of Modern History
- 1991 – 1994 Balliol College, Oxford, subject: Modern History
- 1990 Matura, Freies Gymnasium Zurich
- AdS Autorinnen und Autoren der Schweiz
- GfDg Gesellschaft für Designgeschichte
- GUG Gesellschaft für Unternehmensgeschichte
- ICOM International Council of Museums
- SGG Schweizerische Gesellschaft für Geschichte
- SGWSG Schweizerische Gesellschaft für Wirtschafts- und Sozialgeschichte