Swiss Cultural Fund UK

Swiss Cultural Fund UK

PROTOCOL #1 The Helvetic Centre and Yann Gross_ June

The Helvetic Centre, an association of individuals whose ambition is to support the dialogue between the vibrant Swiss art scene and the culture hub London, launched a photographic exhibition entitled PROTOCOL #1 in June. The aim was to investigate shifts of the visual regime through a series of exhibitions and talks dedicated to photography. Each event showed work of emerging talents from the United Kingdom and Switzerland. Following a recurrent procedure, the goal was to offer a laboratory that facilitates exchanges between different fields and audiences. This PROTOCOL #1 session worked around the notion of Participant Observation; the works of Yann Gross and Bronwen Parker-Rhodes traced the nexus between photographic aesthetics and ethnographic investigation.

Swiss-born artist Yann Gross is an internationally known artist. This year he also exhibited his work in a solo show at the Photography Festival in Arles and was selected for the Tyler Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize at the National Portrait Gallery in London. From bikers of the Rhone Valley to Ugandan skaters, he touched on the symbolic re-appropriation of geographical sites, the construction of imaginary communities, as well as the rereading of exoticism in cinema or in photojournalism.

Somewhere between fine art and documentary, Bronwen Parker-Rhodes provided intriguing glimpses into the private worlds that people create for themselves. By intimately entering these personal spaces, she aimed to reveal hidden identities and the elusive rituals and routines of the everyday.

Another highlight was the talk by Adnan Hadzi entitled Sousveillance, which focused on the nature of CCTV footage. 'Sousveillance' is a "surveillance from above" that provides documents to create subjective narratives of the city.

The Protocol #1 exhibition was a great success and the next contribution by the Helvetic Centre to the London art landscape is eagerly awaited.