The invitation to make a tour of a factory for watches changed my artistic career. Much to my surprise Mr. G.'s factory is covered with calendars and posters of tulips and bulb fields. When I ask around, employees tell me in a somewhat embarrassed manner that the director's wife is Dutch and that she had hung these posters. Posing the question whether they like these pictures, I barely get an answer. It eventually becomes clear that they have no choice in this matter, and nobody ever asks them anything about it.
It is even more disheartened when I find out that at the end of every year all non-Swiss employees get fired
and have to leave the country. Many of them are from Italy or Spain. With each New Year they have to apply again
  for their previous job. Voiceless people working very hard, always afraid that something bad is looming. I decide to make a photo-reportage on this watch factory. I receive permission to take photographs and Kodachrome slides of every employee of the watch factory and I am able to walk around and communicate with these people for several days.

The world of the watchmakers is not so very different from the world of the artists: personal interests and motivations guide our behaviours; more often than not ignoring others in our grabbing the best opportunity for ourselves. We need to try to overcome the obstacle of unconquered i-ness and break through our own barriers in order to evolve as human beings.

  21.12 1989
Briser les Barrières - An unruly declaration.
Atelier Bois Noir, La Chaux-de-Fonds (CH}


  1.10 - 31.12 1989   Artist-in-Residence La Chaux-de-Fonds (CH) birthplace of Le Corbusier