Hans Steiner – Swiss Master of Photo Modernism

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At the Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne – Switzerland, there is a very interesting exhibition about Hans Steiner. He is one of the most important swiss photographers of the golden era of Photo journalism.
Hans Steiner was born in 1907 in Bern, Switzerland. He was one of the most influent photographers in the 30’s and the 40’s. Thanks to his work, we have a beautiful testimonial of Switzerland economic and social development since the beginning of the 20th Century. Different themes are presented, from the arrival of the first automobiles to the creation of different PowerPlants. Hans Steiner is interested by all themes and particularly outdoor activities. He got worldwide famous with the coverage of the Eiger mountain climbing in 1937. Different expeditions died or failed trying to climb this swiss mountain.

He also got interested into Politics and made several portraits of General Guisan. He also illustrated different themes of the modern life. Machines, industries, the Swiss Army and also fashion. He made several advertising for magazines and special articles.

At Musée de l’Elysee, there is a complete collection of different photographs, most of them presented thanks to a great work of restoration made by swiss experts.

Here are some of my prefered photos from the exhibition.

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Hans Steiner worked for many magazines like Die Woche or Schweizer Illustreirt. His great work shows the social evolution of Swiss society. Most of his photographs can have a double reading. Are they an information support or an Art support? The aesthetics of his shots, the decoration and the highlight of daily scenes gives to the visitor the freedom of interpretation.

Musée de l’Elysée
18, avenue de l’Elysée
1014 Lausanne – Switzerland
Tél. ++41 21 316 99 11

Until May 2011.

Switzerland is a true story of modernity.
LA

Image sources: hanssteiner.ch