Not Vital was born in 1948 in Sent in the Swiss Lower Engadine. From 1968 to 1969, he studied at the Centre universitaire expérimental de Vincennes in Paris before moving to New Your in 1974. In the 1980s, he created his first three-dimensional works. Vital currently divides his time between Brazil, Chile, China, Niger and Switzerland.
His works are inspired from his encounters, impressions and collaborative projects amongst different cultures around the world. Working in diverse media across sculpture, installation, paintings and drawings, Vital’s works frequently blur the boundaries between reality and the surreal.
His works are shown in major museums and galleries as well as in public spaces worldwide. In his Parkin Not dal Mot in Sent, for example, the works Eselsbrücke, Turm der Stille, Eishaus, and other works are installed.
His foundation Not Vital (fundaziun Not Vital) in Ardez aims to return prints, in particular from the 17th and 18th century, to their origins, as part of a Rhaeto-Romanic library. The foundation also includes an art collection with works by Not Vital and others. In 2010, he took part in the competition for the redesign of the chancel of St. Gallen Cathedral. He won the Art-et-Architecture competition with his No Problem Sculpture for Zurich’s Mobimo Tower, a high-rise building completed in 2011. In March 2016, Vital acquired Tarasp Castle from the Hessen family.
The artist’s work was featured in “Plateau of Humanity” at the 49th Venice Biennale, Italy (2001). Vital’s major exhibitions have taken place at the Kunsthalle Bielefeld, Germany (2005), The Arts Club of Chicago, Illinois, (2006), KÖR Kunsthalle Wien public space Karlsplatz, Vienna, Austria (2009-2010), Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China (2011), the Cabinet d’Arts Graphiques, Musées d’Art et d’Histoire, Geneva, Switzerland (2014), and the Museo d’arte di Mendrisio, Mendrisio, Switzerland (2014-2015). In 2013, 700 Snowballs was on view on the Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice, Italy. In autumn 2014, Vital’s Tongue was be featured in the Busan Biennale 2014, South Korea. Vital had his first solo show at Sperone Westwater in 1995 with subsequent exhibitions in 1997, 1999, 2004, 2007, and 2012.