photoSCHWEIZ is the largest and most important Swiss platform for photography - both digital and live. As an annual exhibition of work. We have been proud of this since 2005 and know that there is much more potential for the future! We took the first step on our own: In 2017, we launched photoMÜNCHEN and also established the platform in (southern) Germany. Now we want to push ahead with internationalization, together with you! Because the digital business model with curated photographer profiles and assorted showcases is economically successful already. And because we have perfected the platform that we developed with an EPFL spin-off. Let's scale together, with a meaningful digital business case. And assorted showcases in key markets. Like Amsterdam, Stockholm and Milan. Or later Mexico, Cape Town and New York.
Since 2005, the brand photoSCHWEIZ has been the principal photography exhibition in Switzerland. Over the years, thousands of curated photographers have exhibited, and hundreds of thousands of visitors have bought tickets. At the same time, we created a digital platform where photographers can create their own profiles for their works, workshops and seminars and thus access our international community. We have broadly established photography as an art form and made it accessible to everyone.
Now we want to continue to grow internationally. We are primarily focusing on the roll-out of our digital business model, accompanied by regional exhibitions with regional photographers in vibrant European cities - and later also in international creative hotspots. We want to be the only global hybrid platform for our photographers and visitors and thus make an important contribution to intercultural exchange through this fascinating medium.
We want to take you on this inspiring journey as a co-owner so that we can grow faster and thus achieve a direct impact for photographers. A business case with a meaningful character.
When we first staged a photography exhibition in 2005 with the intention of providing a popular platform for photography, an art form then snubbed by museums and cultural institutions, far removed from academic know-it-allism, we did not imagine that, 18 years later, photoSCHWEIZ would be by far the largest and most important photo exhibition in Switzerland, featuring over 250 photographers.
While initially eyed critically by cultural journalists and ignored by high culture, we have succeeded in creating a regular audience of several thousand visitors over the years. The initial resistance from the established photography scene, who thought we were a bit too popular, actually spurred us on to prove them wrong.
We focused on young talents, took a completely new approach to presentation with a unique scenography, placing the exhibited works on 100% recyclable polystyrene cubes, and we geared our event towards a happening. When we launched the series "The View of Others" in 2008 - with special exhibitions on blind photographers, prison inmates or patients of a psychiatric clinic - and the photoFORUM in 2010, where we were able to attract international star photographers such as Peter Lindbergh, James Nachtwey, René Burri and Greg Gormann, the photography establishment also began to take an interest in us.
This was our breakthrough. Since then, we have added new modules every year to the core exhibition, such as the photoSCHOOL with countless workshops and seminars, the photoWALK through Zurich's neighbourhoods, the photoINDUSTRY with commercial partners or, since 2016, the Photographer of the Year Award in collaboration with our Swiss Photo Academy.
photoSCHWEIZ 2023 I SRF Faces&Stories
photoSCHWEIZ 2022 I SRF Faces&Stories
The platform offers a carefully curated selection of photographs. Photographers can present their profiles with their work, workshops and seminars on our platform, giving them the opportunity to make their art accessible to a wide audience. An integrated e-commerce section allows visitors to purchase these artworks directly, creating a direct connection between artists and art lovers. Educational offerings in the form of online workshops and tutorials promote learning and the further development of photographic skills. Our platform is also a lively forum for exchange within the community. With personalized recommendations, a user-friendly interface, SEO optimization and social media integration, we maximize the visibility and reach of our content. Data protection and secure payment methods are always at the forefront to ensure the trust of our users. With this interactive and secure platform, developed by an EPFL spin-off, we can now build on the successful analog products and scale internationally, ensuring that photographers and art lovers get their money's worth: Discovering new things, deepening knowledge and creating access for all.
Since our launch, the photoSCHWEIZ brand has been in our hands as founders. Now, we would like to enrich this circle with people who share our joy and passion for photography as well as our values; people who are interested in an intercultural exchange, and who ultimately want to support the growth of an ambitious company.
Our cultural enterprise is exciting for traditional investors as well, not just because it is the first crowdinvesting of a Swiss cultural enterprise. But also, because we want to explicitly share photoINTERNATIONAL with the people who have supported us over the years – exhibiting photographers, individuals and companies who have collaborated with us and, last but not least, our loyal audience.
...an experienced team with know-how in the international event and cultural scene.
Our managing director and founder Michel Pernet has been living photo for 18 years and has produced more than 1,000 events in a wide variety of fields. For years, his creativity has created unique moments that remain with their audience for a long time and enrich the cultural scene.
Selina Widmer, our exhibition manager, manages the events with her organizational talent. She never ceases to amaze and surprise us with an answer to every question and, if necessary, a creative solution.
Angela Amsler is our creative graphics genius, her multimedia thinking enriches our social media channels with exciting content - always to the point and beautifully packaged.
Marc Olivier Pittner is our tech brain. He is responsible for the entire digital platform and contributes his knowledge of AI, social media, digital marketplaces and interfacing admin tools on a daily basis.
Our founder Peter G. Kurath is the financial brain behind photo. With a steady hand, he guides us through the numbers - especially during the pandemic - and creates a framework that lets us implement production efficiently.
In Switzerland, we can rely on our tried-and-tested team of curators. For internationalization, we rely on local curatorial and production teams.
As part of the photoFAMILY, you will have your say in the expansion of our photography exhibitions. Plus, you will enjoy our exclusive VIP passes, special prints/NFTs promotions and artist dinners at all our events. We look forward to welcoming committed co-owners who are actively involved and proud to be a part of the shows.
Having big goals is atypical for Swiss entrepreneurs. And yet we have them. We want to design and develop a world map for outstanding photography. Digitally, on a curated platform. But also in real life, with curated exhibitions in the world's most important creative cities. So that a global, intercultural exchange is created in which the other, the foreign, inspires - and does not frighten. What an important signal in autocratic times.
With the capital you bring into our company, we can finance the international roll-out of our digital platform for curated photography. A digital platform that we have successfully tested in Switzerland and Munich and that works as a business model with curated photographer profiles, a store, seminars and interaction. Certainly also because we support it with an annual retrospective with over 200 exhibitors and many showcases in between.
How do we implement this roll-out? By involving new creative cities year after year. Specifically: six in the next three years. On the digital platform, with integration of the most important photographers in each city and local features. But also in real life with showcases and exhibitions. This is how we network with the local creative scene and local photographers. And create awareness and credibility for our platform among the public.
We would be delighted if you would join us on this inspiring journey as a co-owner. We can grow faster with you than alone.
As a shareholder you profit from a range of exculsive photography benefits:
With 50 to 200 shares, you will get All Access passes. They give you and your friends free access to all photo events, including the respective supporting programs.
Starting at 500 shares, you will receive a VIP pass. This allows you to participate in all guided tours and our exclusive photographers' dinners, where you can connect with the stars of the scene, visit their studios, or take part in customized shoots.
From 1000 shares upwards, you will receive several VIP passes. They allow you and your friends to participate in all guided tours and our exclusive photographers' dinners, where you can connect with the stars of the scene and visit studios or take part in customized shoots. Plus, you get access to selected signed prints and NFTs produced exclusively for our co-owners in limited series or as unique pieces.
Today, we want to take the next step on our incredibly inspiring journey. To do that, we need you - a passionate creative industry investor and supporter.