[Avoid the rain and see the Faces of Geneva with Josh Fassbind himself, today 30 September at 15:00 at Maison Tavel]
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A new photo exhibit at Maison Tavel promises to introduce you to the many Faces of Geneva, foreign faces that is, as captured by one of Geneva’s own, Josh Fassbind.
Fassbind, a half-Swiss, half-American Geneva-born photographer says his style brings together “Old Europe’s precision and tradition with America’s fresh and easy-going style.”
I confess, I have been a closet fan of his for sometime. I first came across his excellent work serendipitously through GenevaLunch’s flickr photo group, to which he often contributes. Then – as many things go these days – he started following GenevaLiving on Twitter and I started following him.
Through social media I discovered Fassbind is an avid traveler and have followed his travel photo blogs; heard about his wedding -he got married almost a year ago- and found out his birthday is 26 June.
As any of his social media followers can testify, the Faces of Geneva exhibit was in the making for quite some time. Even longer if you consider that Fassbind first started taking pictures in his early teens. However, because of the prohibitive cost of film and developing back then, he stopped taking photos.
“It was only with the boom of digital photography that my interest rose again,” said Fassbind to me in one of our email exchanges. “In 2006, I bought my first digital SLR before taking a road trip to Canada and the US. I was hooked instantly but it was still only a hobby. The passion though, was quickly spreading. So, when the company I worked for closed down in 2010, I decided to give professional photography a chance.”
Faces of Geneva was born from that fortuitous moment.
The exhibit captures a person from each of the countries in the globe residing in the city at their favorite environment. “Some of the people had been here less than two weeks before the photo was taken. Others, have been here their whole life. The vast majority however, are people that have been only a few years in Geneva.”
I wonder if any of the “faces” have already left town. That is bound to happen in a city with such a transient community as Geneva. Fassbind doesn’t seem to be bothered by the ever revolving door of expats, “these people coming and going is what makes Geneva so culturally rich. I don’t believe it to be a drag.”
“I’ve had a few surprises in the past (with Faces of Geneva as well) talking about upcoming projects a bit too early. So this time, I will keep the project a secret but I will say this: it will deal with deep emotions.”
As for his advice to me: “Glad you came out of the closet!” I am glad too Mr. Fassbind.
Faces of Geneva is exhibited at Maison Tavel until February 2013. Entry fee is only CHF3 and free for those 18 and under. In addition, anyone aged 16 and over can participate in a contest where the main prize includes a photo session with Josh Fassbind.