di Christian Lutz
Over a period of three years, from 2003 to 2006, the Swiss photographer Christian Lutz accompanied a member of the Swiss Federal Council on diverse official occasions throughout the world.
In Protokoll he observes the mise-en-scène of authority within the hierarchies to which the political decision makers and their delegations are subjected. He isolates the clichés that rule the world and records the unsaid and unobserved with his camera.
His images show a reality that differs from the official photographic reports.
The power that is presented in these strictly codified rituals gives way only briefly in fleeting gestures.
Lutz delimits a context in which the activities of the ministers, their deputies, and the personal that orbits the political cosmos unfold.
The photographs present a concentrated critique that calls into question a deeply ingrained system of representation and causes readers to alternate between laughter and astonishment.
This work is part of a trilogy on power with In Jesus' Name and Tropical Gift.
Christian Lutz was born in Geneva in 1973. Trained at the Ecole Supérieure de l'Image le 75, in Brussels. First he followed in the wake of documentary photography, but quickly stood out and asserted an outlook that was distanced away from reality, that illuminated the tenuous border between fiction and reality.
In the early 2000s, he began a visual investigation into power and its staging, known as the Trilogy. This work, which is fundamentally political and involved, propelled him on the national and international stage. It consists of three series that each led to books being published by Lars Müller Publishers: Protokoll (2007), on the codes of political representation; Tropical Gift (2010), on economic power, and finally In Jesus' Name (2012), on religious power.
In 2016, the photographer published Insert Coins, a series documenting Las Vegas.
His whole approach is impregnated by the theme of power relationships, whether expressed between individuals or between social groups.
Distinguished by many awards, the work of Christian Lutz is displayed around the world and is regularly published.
After working for several years with the VU agency in Paris, Christian Lutz co-founded the international artistic platform MAPS in 2017.