Gardens of Switzerland & Austria
This week my new assistant Yannick Wilkesmann started working for me. He is studying photography at an Art school in Zurich. For his third year he assists me and learns more of the real life as a working photographer. His passion is wildlife and taking pictures of it, but the Swiss alps and taking pictures of the Ibex aren’t enough for him. He prefers to freeze his fingers whilst looking for Polar Bears in the high arctic.
Face of Europe Book: Successful Crowdfunding Campaign
Siberia: Tree Project
Bordeaux: Tasting the 2020 vintage
Chasing Mountains: Zermatt
Face Of Europe: Concept of new book
Shooting in the Snow, Switzerland
Tree Project: Costa Rica
Chasing Mountains: Jungfrau
Tree Project: Engadin
Paris: First Photoproduction after Lockdown
First Tourists in Venice after Lockdown
Somewhere between Schindellegi and Rio de Janeiro
Art Delivery: Vakil Mosque of Shiraz, Iran
Bordeaux: Primeur Week
London: Unique woman shoot
Face of Europe: Selecting pictures
Cherry Blossom: Sakura Matsuri, Japan
India: Corporate photoshooting
Photoshoot in the Lavaux
Face of Europe: Carpentry at the Ural
Art Collection in Gstaad
Face of Europe: Europe’s largest Slum „Canada Real“ in Madrid
Face of Europe brought us to all kinds of places. I hadn’t been aware that there was so much poverty and even slums here in Europe. The Cañada Real in Madrid is Europe’s largest slum with about 8500 inhabitants. We also went to a few other slums in Europe for the project: Sevilla’s Tres Mil Viviendas and Marseille’s quartiers nords where not even the police dare to go. The atmosphere was quite strange as on the one hand, we encountered incredibly loving and helpful people that enriched this project and on the other hand, we also saw quite a few armed people standing there. I believe that only and especially because of such acts, we were able to produce a real and authentic Face of Europe.
Indian Ocean in Knysna, South Africa
Freediver Hanli Prinsloo with Seals, South Africa
Annie Leibovitz with Damilola Odusote and me at her woman exhibition in London
In 2016, I got the opportunity to attend the grand opening of Annie Leibovitz’ exhibition WOMEN: New Portraits in London. While my friends’ heroes were Mick Jagger or Patti Smith, Annie was my rockstar when I was a teenager. Her exhibition was held at the Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, a redbrick ex-industrial space, far away from the high-end galleries of London’s West End. It was a great show about Annie’s project Women that she had started with her late partner, Susan Sontag, in 1999. The artist on the left is Damilola Odusote who is one of my favorite artists who is known for his eclectic abstract paintings and artwork. It was a great honour for me to attend and also lots of fun to spend a long evening together.
Royal Ascot, UK
Hong Kong: Shooting at the Victoria Peak
Face of Europe: Quarry in Malta
Crew Picture in Zürich with Andrea Kummler and Jonas Oswald
Face of Europe: Scandinavians
Face of Europe: forest workers in Pyaozersky, Russia
Great Wall: China
Face of Europe: Project Start in Lithuania
Holi Festival, India
New York Fashion Shoot
Bookbridge Academy, London
Longest tunnel in the world: Gotthard, NEAT
On the 23rd of March 2011 the drilling work was completed in the Gotthard Base Tunnel that had been built since 1999. It’s the longest tunnel in the world, with a total route length of 57 km. I documented this project photographically from start to finish for Keystone Agency and also have had the chance to revisit it since then. At the breakthrough, I was inside the drillhead and took some incredible shots of this historical moment.
Moran Maasai Warrior School
Freestyle, Zurich for Keystone
Kuarupe Festival, Xingu, Brasil
Swiss Athletes: Simon Amman, Marcel Fischer, Roger Federer, and Fabian Cancellara
Pipilotti Rist, Zürich for Keystone
Aging: Swiss Photo Press Award
Loveparade: Berlin for Keystone
Tonga: First light of the millenium
Flag thrower in Jungsfrau Region
In my time as a photographer for Keystone I tried to illustrate the great topics of our time through expressive imagery. The relationship between Switzerland and the EU was a special challenge for me, because it can’t easily be portrayed. My idea of a flag thrower with an EU and a Swiss flag in front of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau wasn’t well received in the editorial meeting. After nobody had come up with a better idea, I had an EU flag made and hiked onto the Männlichen in Jungfrau Region with a Swiss flag thrower. This snap shot was captured when the Swiss flag slipped away from the flag thrower, which humorously illustrated the heated political environment of the 1990s. For many years, this was one of the most published photos in Switzerland.
Piccard, Balloon around the globe
In March 1999, Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones completed the first ever successful non-stop balloon circumnavigation of the globe. They were also the first time not requiring any fuel, being carried only by a series of jet streams. The flight started in Château d’Oex in Switzerland and ended after 19 days, 21 hours and 47 minutes in Egypt. I took this picture of the landing from the air, since we couldn’t land on the plateau for geographical reasons. It was a rather difficult mission to accompany the balloon with our small plane, a Pilatus PC-12, during a big part of his journey, since we had to go get constantly new permits for flying over foreign territory.
Me taking pictures of Diego Armando Maradona
Child Labour: Potosi/Bolivia
On my first trip to South America in 1987 I also went to the Altiplano in Bolivia, the high plateau in the Andes, and the city of Potosí. It is a very dry and barren landscape on about 4000 m above sea level. In the early 17th century, this big city was made rich because of the silver and tin deposit. The tunnels deep down in the mines are very narrow, so only small people can access them, which is one of the reasons why many kids work in there, just as this 12 year old boy. Child labour in the mines is still happening today; in 2014 the Bolivian government passed a law establishing the minimum age of workers at 11 years old and regulating what activities are forbidden for adolescents, in order to adapt restrictions imposed by international conventions on child labour.
El Petén: Ocelot and Macaw
Portrait of Elton John
As most teenagers and young adults in the 80s we went to many great concerts. While my friends were carried away by the music, I tried to shoot extraordinary pictures for various newspapers and image agencies. At an Elton John gig I discovered the reoccurring reflection of the keys in his glasses. At that time there was neither autofocus nor digital photography, so it required the highest level of concentration to catch exactly the right moment where Elton John’s fingers played the keys and to get a sharp photo onto the film.