i went to switzerland at the end of october.
my purpose was to attend in the opening reception party of Andreas Seibert‘s photo exhibition, “HUAI HE – The Colors of Growth” which is held in winterthur, switzerland. it is a documentary photo exhibition about what the rapid economic growth of china has brought to it’s own country, in along one of the most important rivers in china, the HUAI HE river.

also it was my first time traveling to the european continent. the first time street photographing in another country, other than japan. i took some tri-x and some fuji acros, but the weather wasn’t so good, i only used the tri-x with my m6, 35 cron asph attached. i think this is one of the largest entries.

so here we go.

at the narita airport. my flight was to zurich. leaving japan at 10:25am.

having beer from the morning, it was a very nice flight.

i was too bored in the plane had to take everything i saw. the flight attendant playing with his iPad.(ok, it’s not)

the self serviceness for the economy class passengers.

the SWISS flight attendants.

people waiting in line for the toilets.

so i arrived at zurich airport.

oh yeah it was hot…it was freezingly cold!

i think i was like this too, or more worse because all the signs were in german, i couldn’t read.

aww, he received a hot mail from his wife i assume.

arrived at the zurich HB station, but didn’t have a clue where i was…

so i went to starbucks to get some wifi.

just taking photos of random things.

another place where you can see all over the world.

zurich was rather different than i expected, because it was also globalized like the city in tokyo, you could see these famous fashion brands, fancy stores everywhere.

zurich central station.

finally met with dominik sigrist, who is a web designer in switzerland. andreas and susanna introduced me to him, so we had been skyping and finally i met him in person. a very gentle and calm nice man. he even made me some mushroom cream pasta. was delicious!! also the cheese and beer!!

where i slept.

and a very nice flat, with this graphic art in the bath.

i was just tired after the long exiting flight.

just having fun taking photographs of the “man” who let me stay in his flat for 4 days. he said that it feels like being the president.

the next day came, now out in the streets!!

i missed a moment here.

i think she is not at all embarrassed.

school kids coming by.

a mercedes taxi.

after i took this shot, i got yelled by i think german, which i did not have any clue what she was saying so i smiled and went off. not well composed though…

it was very nice to see something japanese, since i was homesick already.

some windows 8 ceremony or party or something.

it must have been a real shock… i wonder what it was.

then i went to winterthur for the reception party, which was in a little country side of zurich.

yup he did fall, because the street was wet with the rain but he got up so fast that i missed the moment, also i did ask him if he was ok or not but he went…

different boy, there were so many kids with those kick boards.

nothing much going on except andreas’s photo exhibition in the city.

it was kind of special to meet him in his own country because we always meet in tokyo usually.

antonio, he is an italian writer.

a press conference was held there, which i couldn’t attend.

ryuichiro suzuki, a japanese photographer and a good friend of andreas. he is a very respectful man.

andreas’s assistant in china, sisi xiong and andreas’s wife, susanna.

getting ready for the party.

the party opened.

suzuki-san and gabriella who is a photographer herself from switzerland.

sisi, dominik and his girlfriend were there also.

i’m pretty drunk here by the way. in a toilet at the fotomuseum.

went out because we were about to miss the last train back to zurich.

randoom shots from the bus.

he was the first guy who asked us for some cigarette or money or anything. we told him no, but i didn’t expect some of these encounters in zurich. i guess poverty is there all over the world.

then he went to the other side looking for some things in the trash cans.

after we left domink’s girlfriend to the flat, dominik took me out and showed me around ZURICH HB(central station), and we walked for quite a while. quite interesting to see the people out at mid night screaming, yelling and having the time of their life in the public.

people of zurich waiting for the tram, to go out in the cities for a friday night party.

public toilet.

it was like this. self-washable, beautifully clean public toilet.

infront of the toilet, there was this public library. a very nice building.

trash all over the streets at nights. but dominik told me that public workers come to clean them up in the morning, so the citizens of the city would never realize the truth of garbage.

public phone box, european style.

this lady was asking us for a place to drink, so dominik suggested “the red light district” which used to be a crime scene area in the past. the ladies didn’t think the red light district was now a better, not so safe but a well place to drink and dance. i do not no where exactly they went to but they disappeared in the dark night.

film speed 400, shutter speed 1/4, f2.8.

nothing special but i like the gray tones.

sleeping outside in a freezing cold weather.

the drunks.

even a monster screams on a friday night.

then finally, we came close to the flat, but we went in to a bakery close by for a bite. as i was taking a photograph, the owner yelled at me in german, he said ‘ask befor you take’ in swiss german, which makes sense because i was just taking photographs with out any word. although, what i am trying to capture, all in my photos are not the kind of photos that are prepared(some exceptional situations are allowed), but those rare instant precious moments in the public without people to be interfered or heart by me taking a photograph. i know some people don’t like to be photographed, but this is how i do it. this kind of talk is always common for street shooting, and i think there is no answer to it. maybe i’ll write about what i think to that approach a little later.
anyway, this was the first half of my trip to switzerland. i feel like posting them now so i divided them into two parts. hope you enjoyed.