Schöne Neue Schweiz
A series of well-known Swiss village views and their subsequent provocative visual redensification by means of montage.
The work summarised under the title “Beautiful New Switzerland” was the subject of a 4-day seminar in 2011 at Hochschule für Technik in Zurich (HSZ-T). The task was to develop pictorial visions using photography and subsequent montage, in an attempt to visually condense heritage-protected central zones of well-known Swiss village structures, such that the ever-louder call for sparing use of land and the associated densification efforts were also to be transferred to views of protected villages. After an introduction to digital image processing and its tools, the course participants travelled to 7 selected Swiss regions known for their historical and characteristically formed village centres. The next step was to comprehensively capture these in photographs. The selected regions included the Engadine, Appenzell, Ticino, Valais, Emmental, Jura and the Eastern Swiss Plateau. Afterwards, the students were asked to extend and condense the traditional structures and buildings found in the photographs, on the basis of selected images from the inventory and by using montage. The aim was to provocatively question the well-known and “sacred” image of typical Swiss village views and to propose a plausible visual alternative via the medium of the image.