Paul Amar

1919 to 2017, Algeria/France

Born in Algeria with French, Catholic and Sephardic Jewish ancestry, Paul Amar experienced poverty, persecution and violence at an early age. His youth was shaped by war, resistance to French colonial rule and a stint in prison.

Perihan Arpacilar

*1949, Turkey/Germany

Perihan Arpacilar was born in Boyabat, Turkey and has been living in Frankfurt for over 30 years. She works at the Atelier Goldstein in Frankfurt am Main. Her leading motif is portraits with human subjects.

Josef Bachler

1914 to 1979, Austria

Born in Vienna, following the death of his mother during his birth, Josef Bachler was raised in an orphanage, by foster parents and a farmer.

Laila Bachtiar

*1971, Austria

Laila Bachtiar was born into a family of musicians in Vienna. Her mother is a cellist and her father, who has Afghan roots, studied singing, piano, trumpet and composition.

Beverly Baker

*1961, United States

Beverly Baker was born in Kentucky with Down’s syndrome. Because of her disability, she was hired to destroy hard copies of official documents, such as tax returns or prison reports.

Jacqueline Bartes

*1928, France

Jacqueline Bartes was born out of wedlock in 1928 in Perpignan, in southern France, not legally recognised by either parent, each of whom was already married to someone else.

Pearl Blauvelt

1893 to 1987, USA

Pearl Blauvelt’s ancestors emigrated from Holland to settle in the Hudson River Valley in New York State. Her family counted amongst the founders of the “First Dutch Reformed Church” dating to 1694.

Thérèse Bonnelalbay

1951 to 1980, France

Thérèse Bonnelalbay was a coal miner’s daughter born in Magalas, a small village in southern France. In 1950 she moved to Marseille and worked as a nurse. She married Joseph Guglielmi in 1959 and had two children.

Ida Buchmann

1911 to 2001, Switzerland

Ida Buchmann was born in Egliswil, Switzerland. Following an initial stay at the psychiatric clinic in Königsfelden in 1953, she continued to live there from 1966 until her death.

Raimundo Camilo

*1939 (or 1943), Brazil

Raimundo Camilo was born in north-eastern Brazil and moved to Rio at a young age to work in construction or restaurant kitchens. After his employer had not paid him, he wandered through the streets, penniless.

Nek Chand

1924 to 2015, Pakistan/India

Nek Chand Saini, which is the artist’s full name, was born into a Hindu family in Berian Kalan, a small village near Lahore, Pakistan.

Kashinath Chawan

*around 1950, India

Kashinath Chawan was born in Pune, India. He creates his drawings by using ballpoint pens on ripped up shoe boxes or pieces of used paper that he finds on the street.

Aloïse Corbaz

1886 to 1964, Switzerland

Aloïse Corbaz was born to a large family in Lausanne. Her father was a postal worker who turned to alcohol to deal with his internal stress. She lost her mother, who suffered from a heart condition, very early in life.

James Edward Deeds

1908 to 1987, USA

James Edward Deeds was born in Springfield, Missouri. When he was 17 years old his authoritarian father committed him – following a violent argument with his brother – to a psychiatric clinic, where he remained for the rest of his life.

Barbara Demlczuk

Date of birth and whereabouts unknown, Austria

Barbara Demlczuk’s stay at the Lower Austrian State Hospital for Psychiatry and Neurology in Klosterneuburg, i.e. in the psychiatric clinic in Gugging, in the 1970s is the only verifiable fact from her life.

Anton Dobay

1906 to 1986, Germany/Austria

Anton Dobay was born in Frankenberg, Germany, was an Austrian citizen, lived alone and was considered a “recluse”. He stated that he worked as a castle gardener in Styria and in the wine district near Mistelbach from about 1960 on.

Jaime Fernandes

1899 to 1968, Portugal

Jaime Fernandes was born in Barco, Portugal and very little is known about his life. He worked as a farmhand, married in 1921 and at the age of 37 he was diagnosed with schizophrenia and received psychiatric treatment in a clinic.

Leonhard Fink

*1982, Austria

Born in Vienna, Lenny – as he is often called – grew up in Weidling near Klosterneuburg, Lower Austria, with his four siblings. Here he completed secondary school and received his first psychiatric treatment at the age of seventeen.

Alois Fischbach

1926 to 1987, Austria

Alois Fischbach was born in Sollenau in Lower Austria and was a sign painter. After an attempted suicide, he was admitted to the psychiatric clinic in Gugging in 1947.

Johann Fischer

1919 to 2008, Austria

Born in Kirchberg am Wagram in Lower Austria, Johann Fischer was trained to be a baker. He was enlisted into the army in 1940 and released from American captivity in 1946.