Excerpt of an interview by Brigitte Werneburg with the artist.
Brigitte Werneburg: Mr Streuli, you spend much more time considering how to present your photographs in exhibition spaces of the public than on taking them. I imagine that when you study the material you befriend some of the protagonists for the first time, so to say. Is that correct?
Beat Streuli: That’s true – taking a photo is really quick – it’s almost as if I take in my surroundings like any other city dweller just by glancing at them, in passing. There is little time to study or even select the photographed subjects as everything is in motion. Later, when looking at the materials, there are moments when you can find an intensive moments in the image again and others when a shot I barely remember turns out to be especially concise. It happens often that the initial intrigue of a photograph does not hold up to a prolonged engagement while others, that at first sight might not be that spectacular become more important. It probably would be more appropriate to say that I tend to befriend certain images rather than the depicted person, even though sympathy for them plays into this.
Kunst - Lufthansa Aviation Center, Publisher: Max Hollein und Nicolaus Schafhausen; Revolver, 2007, p. 111
born 1957 in Altdorf
lives and works in Zurich und Brussels
Beat Streuli is a Swiss photographer as well as video and installation artist who investigates human behaviour in urban public spaces. From 1977 to 1980 he studied at Schule für Gestaltung in Basel and Zurich and for the following five years at Hochschule der Künste in Berlin.
“The inner cities of international metropolises and their streets are the most prevalent but not only subjects of Beat Streuli’s photographic oeuvre. People, architecture, transportation, advertisement and the play of light and shadow create a thick interwoven surface pattern that reconfigures in the blink of an eye. People and traffic are in perpetual motion, the lights move and shift and even the advertising is subject to constant change thanks to large-format screens and LED. Streuli extracts people from this surface and accentuates their appearance through the narrowed picture detail of the tele lens with ist extreme difference in sharpness between fore and background.”
Brigitte Werneburg: Signal der Öffentlichkeut und Zugänglichkeit. Beat Streulis fotografische und filmische Installation im öffentlichen und privaten Raum. in: Kunst - Lufthansa Aviation Center, Publisher: Max Hollein und Nicolaus Schafhausen; Revolver, 2007, p. 119