Pierre Keller

Pierre Keller & Keith Haring Montreux Jazz Festival
Pierre Keller & Keith Haring © Jacques Straesslé

Draw me a Jazz Festival

Initiator of the “carte blanche” posters of the Festival since 1982 and a very active and highly appreciated member of the Foundation Committee since 1995, Pierre Keller has not only revolutionised the visual identity of the Montreux Jazz Festival. He turned it into a piece of art.

The artist liked his posters to be “impactful, funny or disturbing”. In 1982, he asked Jean Tinguely to draw a jazz festival for him. The signature logo was born that year. In 1983, he invited a young American artist to Montreux, Keith Haring, who was little known at the time. He asked him to flood the city’s walls, cars and t-shirts with his waving characters. Many big names followed: Niki de Saint Phalle, Andy Warhol, Max Bill….

“I don’t know anything about music. You don’t know anything about art,” he used to tell his good friend Claude Nobs. The Foundation Committee and the entire Montreux Jazz Festival team would like to pay tribute to him today through the works of art he has initiated.

Goodbye and thank you, Pierre.