Since the mid-1980s, the Fotostiftung Schweiz has housed the photography collection of the Swiss Confederation, which has expanded to comprise more than 2,000 works to date as a result of two types of purchases: on the one hand, works were purchased until the year 2000 by photographers connected with the Swiss Federal Design Award (formerly applied art scholarship) who were just starting out on their careers; on the other hand, selected work groups by established photographers were purchased until the year 2012. All photographic schools are represented in the collection, from photo-reportage to conceptual photography, from documentary projects to purely artistic approaches. Names of well-known photographers stand alongside those whose careers were not as great, despite early successes. Apart from several international highlights – such as the vintage prints by Robert Frank from the collection of his friend Werner Zryd – the Photography Collection of the Swiss Confederation represents a broad cross-section of Swiss photographers of the past 30 years.
The Photography Collection of the Swiss Confederation is part of the Bundeskunstsammlung (Federal Art Collection) which is maintained by the Bundesamt für Kultur, Bern. It is on permanent loan to the Fotostiftung Schweiz.
Selected special acquisitions
Minkoff / Olesen
Selected recipients of the Swiss Federal Design Awards
Gian Paolo Minelli
Michael von Graffenried