From the French Part of Switzerland
The history of photography in western Switzerland is characterized by a peculiarity: elder brothers often brought their younger brothers into the field; sons inherited the businesses from their fathers and their sons or nephews were in turn also forced to follow in the footsteps of their predecessors. These dynasties, businesses handed down from generation to generation, have for the most part written the history of photography in western Switzerland, whether they produced Romantic lake and Alp landscapes outdoors or Biedermeier studio portraits with backdrops…
The twelve approaches presented in this exhibition and catalogue are brought together without any pressure to try to form a total image – neither of a representative cross-section nor of a unified group. The intention was much more to present various– current, exciting, provocative, and playful – positions and visual worlds, thereby allowing precise documentation to come into a visual conversation with tongue-in-cheek installations and mannerist stagings. Despite their differences, despite the varying backgrounds of the photographers or artists, many of the works deal with the formation and interrogation of order, with the structure of organizations – of things, of language, of images, of life – and thereby also take into account their respective opposites (construction and deconstruction, organization and dissolution, recognition and confusion). This is not the result of criteria chosen from the outset – the affinity seems to have arisen almost as a matter of course. Maybe as the result of an unconscious predilection during the compilation? Or perhaps as the result of one of the constants of life today, or at least of visual, photographic creation.
With works by Jacques Berthet, Laurence Bonvin, Silvie & Chérif Defraoui, Deluxe, Nicolas Faure, Alan Humrose, Jean-Pascal Imsand, Eric Lanz, Ursula Mumenthaler, Alexandra Rajic, Olivier Richon, and Maurice Vouga.
The exhibition was curated by Urs Stahel.